July 15, 2008

Second Life (No, Not The Virtual One)...

Well, it looks like things are winding up.

A good weekend and the imminent threat of art sales - and one actual sale - are perking up the outlook for the soul sucking boutique of destiny and I'm spending my beginning of the week weekend just cleaning and relaxing and, now, writing. Which always makes me feel a little like a slug, but calms the nerves a bit so it's A-OK for the general mental health. Plus, I did my sit ups yesterday and plan to do some push ups (and laundry) with a little running up and down the stairs (with and without laundry in hand) a little later today. Though, I'm only going outside to get the mail. 

It's MY weekend and I'll be a hermit if I want!

In fact, I'm feeling so stressed and burnt out; I might just veg in front of the TV a little extra bit today too. Watch a movie, if one I want to see happens to be on (or find one on demand if possible). It's amazing how soothing the dancing lights and suspension of disbelief can be if used in an appropriate manor. Now, I'm not condoning addiction, mind you. It's all about moderation and knowing when enough is enough. As with anything. Though, the afore mentioned can indeed be very addictive. 

Ok. So, the whole point of last week's entry (and this weeks too) is how addictive some things can be. I might have sold a couple of large paintings for my current artist (buyer is on vacation so I'll know next week) and the weekend was a good one sales wise so now, I'm thinking maybe I've been too hasty in my retreat. However, as my wise young mother so aptly pointed out:

Running a business tends to make us display clear signs of gambling addiction behavior. 

You're up, you're down... if I can just hold out a little longer, my ship will come in... especially in the first year - even though, technically it's the 6th for pearldaddy, it's a new location and it's a new format, layout, product offerings, etc; so it's a first year equivalent...

Which means I'm back and forth between: "what the hell was I thinking" and "it could be really good, if I can just hold out a little longer" kind of head spinning stress thoughts. Along with alternate ending type thoughts and what to do to pick things up or move them in a new direction. Oh, and trying to think things through a little more without making snap, and possibly hasty decisions - well, not too much anyway. Which just plays back into the "If I can just hold out a little longer" mentality.

So, ya... a drink and a good movie starts looking like a much better idea than running around working my ass off and getting nowhere faster. 


I'll take a veg break and recharge the batteries and start running around again. Until I need another recharge. 


Only the fates can tell. 

July 7, 2008

The End of The Beginning - Or is it The Beginning of The End?

Well, I fought like a pit bull. I worked like a dog. The sweat, blood and tears that went into moving the store to Beacon does not seem to have paid off. Struggle and strife and no support from the original owner (and personal friend), and mostly just lip service support from the meager general public that does come through, has left everything teetering on the brink and now it looks like the year of hard work and money dumped into making it happen was wasted. 

Yes, this means Fish has said: "Close the store"

I say: "But it's only been a year! Though, it's been a hard and harried one... I put so much of me into this place it's a shame not to see it through to the rest of the year at least... Plus, I just got the online store up, we should at least give that time to bring in sales too..."

And other such things that constantly run around in my head. Torn between knowing that it's time to let go and the knowledge that the first year is always the hardest in a new business. Between exhaustion and the nagging voice that says: Hang on for just a little longer. Let's face it. 50 miles from the original location with virtually no original customers following us over is starting from scratch. I knew that going in. I thought Fish knew it and was going to help. Eh... Things aren't always as they seem or even as spoken of. Though, to be fair, he did try to take out a business loan. Denied. Not surprising in this economic climate I suppose. Or with Fish's track record of not really keeping track, and talent for getting ripped off and stuck in contracts he can't get out of. Oh, and for not getting paid for working. 

Looks like that one might be some kind of virus he passed on to me. I suppose closing would be the acute solution. 

Cons: There's just not enough business and I've been unable to pay the rent on time for the last three months (still don't have the rent yet for this month) and barely able to pay the store bills... let alone my bills...  without back up and reserves, it means the end. Kaput. Over. Stuck so far in debt, the few improvements and ads that may help are out of reach and create a vicious circle. There are A/C issues and another portable that doesn't work that needs to be sent back but, to keep anyone in the store in the summer, A/C is necessary - it's also a necessity for me to be able to make anything and do the custom work  I am asked to do. Plus, I have artists booked for exhibits through until next Fall, so I'll have to cancel all those shows. 

Pros: (with some additional Cons) A lot of people are coming in and saying they will definitely be back - but (Cons:) they are taking an awfully long time to make it back in. Everyone likes the look of the store so the toil was worth it - but (Cons:) it was a lot of time and money that hasn't been made back yet and may have to be forfeited into the building if we close now. Custom work requests are picking up - but (Cons:) with the a/c not working and closure lurking on the horizon; it's a struggle to decide if it's worth getting a new one if we're closing because then I'll just have to sell it a month or two after I get the new one but I can't work if I'm sweating and no one will stay and buy anything to help us at least clear things out... Everyone likes the art work we've exhibited and a lot of artists want to show in our gallery - but (Cons:) I have yet to sell any of it. 

Oh, it just keeps going on. 

So, yes. The woes of being a small, non-essential goods, business in hard economic times compounds the first year business problems. And; with energy levels, morale, customers and therefore funds, running very low; it is with a heavy heart that I prepare to throw in the towel and work on developing Plan C. 

Apparently, Plan B didn't work. 

I should probably work on a Plan D and E just incase too. 


I need a long nap, long vacation, steady income, and some perspective.