If you’ve never heard of Simon & Schuster’s Insider program, let me give you a little info. Simon & Schuster has a program they call “Simon Insiders”, it’s a program where anyone who loves the publisher, or books in general can gather up Tweetable and Facebook-postable articles straight from the Simon Insider’s website and spread it among their followers. There’s some incentive to it, mostly being on the front lines of knowing some publishing news as it comes out and being entered into contests for things like free books or Audible downloads. It’s a pretty neat program and you can queue up all kinds of articles to automatically post for you over a period of time. I joined it a few months back (to fill my twitter/Facebook feed with book-related posts).
One of the perks to being a Simon Insider is that every month, the top re-tweeters and posters of Simon Insiders articles get thrown into a short list of people who are eligible to win a Simon & Schuster prize pack… as sort of a Thank You for spreading the publishing news. In November, I was one of those top contenders, and they shipped me out a swag-pack. That pack arrived today.
Honestly, it’s pretty cool stuff. As you can tell from my shoddy picture up there at the beginning of this post, I got a size Large Catch-22 vintage book-cover T-shirt… which is pretty awesome. I also got a shiny Pocket Books notepad, a little blurb about Japan Town, a thriller by Barry Lancet, a Sabrina Jeffries tote, an Astor Place Vintage mirror/sewing kit, as well as two books: Song of Spiderman by Glen Berger, and The Secret Recipes by Dominque Ansel.
I’ll be honest, it’s pretty neat getting new stuff in the mail. The books look interesting, the shirt is awesome, and the other items are useful. I couldn’t be happier… except one thing…. UPS wrecked the package. Let’s take a look:
Can we just take a moment to look at this nightmare? This is only one side. There were rips and re-tapes on both ends and both sides of the package. It was so beat up that the interior had ripped open and the padding between the layers of paper (which I can only refer to as handfuls of recycled fluff) had spilled out into the contents of the package.
So unfortunately, in the end, the mirror/sewing kit was shattered, leaving splinters of mirrored glass all over my floor, and the book tote was ripped (see the corner of the first picture) and covered in fluff. It’s a little sad. I was hoping for the contents of my package to arrive intact, but I’m still happy with what Simon & Schuster sent me—I’m just not so thrilled with UPS.