Monday, August 31, 2015

A hijacking, and bureaucracy bites back

Today, I’ve hijacked Misha Gericke’s blog, in the nicest way of course, to talk about the need for research in speculative fiction. Why not pop over and say “Hello”?

I’m preparing to give a talk at the Sidney library on “A Writer’s Visual Toolkit” - based on a series of blog posts I wrote a few years ago.

And further to last week’s post about my paperbacks snared in DHL-land, I filled in and emailed the form they needed last weekend. One week later, having heard nothing further and seeing my shipment still showing as awaiting customs clearance on their tracking site, I called again.

A very apologetic lady looked into it and said I should have received an email with the amount of duty payable. Had I? No! She told me how much was owing and gave me instructions for paying online. Duties paid, and I have my receipt to prove it - see, they do know my email address, they just don’t seem to know how to use it - I’m now back to the waiting game...


  1. Good luck with the customs folks. They do seem to have a way of keeping you waiting and then acting like you should have known the problem all along. And funny they can email you a receipt, but not a notification of why your deliveries were delayed.

  2. Time slows to a crawl when you're waiting for something to arrive.

  3. Alex, here's hoping!

    Shell, I don't think it's customs in this case, it's being held by DHL who are failing to contact me for the information they need to clear it through customs.

    Stephen, especially when you are on a deadline! I want these books in time for my library talk...

  4. Hi Ian .. company's can be so challenging and don't 'do' the norm .. I hope you can get your books soon ... good luck.

    I hope the books turn up for your library talk ... all the very best - Hilary

  5. Woot! I'm stoked about your new release and very much looking forward to reading (and reviewing) it.

  6. Hilary, the good news is my books finally arrived today. Woo-hoo!

    Crystal, hope you enjoy it!

  7. So glad your books arrived!

    It is infuriating to have them delayed. (My paperback proofs were delayed by more than a month.)

  8. Good luck with your talk! It would be interesting and nerve-whacking to have to talk at a library about some of my past blog posts. But I would do it.

    I see that your books arrived. YAY!!!!!! :D

  9. Misha, it's doubly frustrating when you can track them and see that they've just been sitting in the same warehouse for 3 weeks!

    Chrys, I actually enjoy giving talks like this. My biggest worry is keeping it within the time allowed - basically an hour or so after deducting time for intros and clear-up.


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