I purchased the Pinaccle Package from Authorhouse's Self-Publishing deals online and made a full payment of $2,299. It was for my very first book. A children's novel entitled - only about 120 pages long. I had never been published before and, at twenty years old, thought it would be a good way to promote myself as an author to have a published novel under my belt.
It all started on the wrong foot. Julie, the representative I was put with, would not listen to my requests. She ignored my request for an editting service (which would have earned the company $1,275). She only wanted the basic information so she could move my book onto formatting. I was very upset that my needs weren't being met and when I was pushed onto the second step (the formatting process) I requested a cancellation.
Two months went by and I waited quite patiently- as they said it could take up to 30 days. Finally, after recieving no refund, I called Authorhouse. [continued below]....
..... The representatives told me I had been issued a refund of $0.00. Upset, I asked why. They said my book was finished and I explained that it absolutely was not. So they said they would get me in touch with a higher representative.
Well when I contacted him he pointed out that I would only recieve a $526.00 refund. Why? My book had already been formatted and I needed to cover the fees for the consultation and formatting. I tried to explain that my book had been pushed onto that step before I was ready (hence the reason I cancelled to begin with). That's when he pulled out the terms and conditions stating I would only recieve a 25% refund once the book had been done formatting. And I would only recieve a 50% refund if my book manuscript had been submitted. I continued to argue that I had not approved my book to be formatted, but my arguement was ignored. Needless to say none of the refunds were ultimately issued to me and I ultimately had to file a claim with the BBB (who is now looking into it).
So far, here are all of the services/products I paid for and I did not recieve:
30 Book Stubs
Book Signing Kit
Barnes & Noble Listing
Book Sellers Return Program
Book Buyer's Preview
Amazon and Google Listings
5 Hardcover Copies
20 Paperback Copies
Complimentary Author Copy
Digital Formatting and Distribution
Library of Congress Control Number
And I have been issued exactly $0.00 as a refund:.
From the very beginning Authorhouse ignored my requests and rushed me through the process. Now I see why, as they have written in very small print all of the fees that occur as each step is reached. Authorhouse assumed that a twenty-year-old girl who writes children's books could easily be taken advantage of. And as of right now they are correct. But I will not stand to be walked on. My feelings are hurt and my hopes of being a writer are temporarily shattered. Buyer's beware... they promise great feats and offer a lot of opportunities to lose money.