Yes FYI I am StillTrading
Obviously everything is very strange at the moment. We’re all trying to make our own way through the chaos, and how hard it hits us depends very much on where we were before the pandemic spread.
In terms of my own work-life balance, the two groups of people I’m paying the most attention to right now are the independent kink traders and the indie bookshops, what with being both of these things, after a fashion. The bookshops are , though all those with physical stores are closed to physical customers: some are offering vouchers to be cashed in at a later date, a few are still able to do local doorstep delivery and many offer mail-order or online ordering. If you love books generally, and want to do a bit more reading at present, do please try to support an indie shop rather than the Zon, if you can manage to do so. (There is a considerably reduced distribution network at present, but it’s worth asking…)
You might have seen one or two news stories about a surge in sex toy sales around the time the lockdown started: if you are in need, as well you might be, of some self-comforting or some new toys to try out with the person you’re currently staying at home with, then there are more opportunities to support the small businesses, independent traders and craftspeople. All the markets are on hold, but LAM/LAMchester are doing some online activities showcasing the ranges offered by the regular traders, and there are a lot of vendors listed on the BBB site.
I have seen a few little spots of vicious puritanism online, suggesting that there is something wrong with ordering anything other than food or medicine at present as well as something wrong with going for a daily walk just because you need some air. I don’t, as you might expect, have much time for that attitude. While some restrictions on our lives are necessary, there is no need to treat the lockdown as some kind of punishment – and to behave as though it is will do a lot more harm than leaving people alone to buy Easter eggs or sit in the park, a safe distance from others, to feel the sun on their faces for a few minutes.
There was a surprisingly good HuffPo article recently which pointed out that small businesses need customers and are perfectly justified in trying to keep going as much as they can – and, also, people’s mental health will benefit from including a few safe pleasures in their lives.
In my own case, I have quite a bit of stock in hand, as I had just placed some substantial orders at the start of March. I’ll be posting orders out every Wednesday, and updating the list of titles on the site as things sell out, as well as working my way through the things that I don’t usually sell online. So do have a look in the bookshop – and drop me an email if you remember seeing something you liked but didn’t get around to buying at one of the last events.
(It’s worth following me on Twitter as well to see when I have added anything else to the shop…)