As I hope you can understand(this being my 28th day in a row), i've been a little preoccupied selling books recently, and have somewhat neglected my duties as blogster. Apologies for this. Suffice to say it's been busy, bookwise. We've sold a few, we've ordered a few....you get the idea.
I don't really know what to say at the moment. We're selling a hod load of stuff and we're getting lots of new customers. That's all we could ask for.
We can't compare it to anything, as we weren't open last xmas, so our like for like sales are excellent. 100% up on last year you could say.
Our suppliers are still performing very well. The nervousness of the book industry around Bertrams seems to us (so far) unfounded. We've had our deliveries every day, and availability hasn't been too bad at all. I wish they'd had more copies of Bad Science and Mr Gum, but then again, we should have ordered more in the first place, so we can hardly blame our suppliers.
SHOCK HORROR our Bertram delivery didn't arrive on Friday, which sent shudders through the whole of the book trade no doubt.... the more hysterical commentators may have phoned up the Bookseller straight away to bang on about how this was a sure sign that things were falling apart in Norwich. However, to provide a more reasoned argument, we had a Harpercollins box that didn't turn up last week. And there was a split delivery from Penguin last month. And a telephone order we placed with Macmillan on November 23rd didn't arrive until December the 12th. And perhaps more relevantly, a Gardners delivery which claimed to be 'out for delivery' this morning at 8.30 didn't turn up at all.
These things happen. The Bertrams delivery that didn't turn up yesterday arrived this morning with an apology from the delivery driver, and no doubt the Gardners box will arrive on Monday. It's Christmas for Santa's sake. Let's eat too many mince pies and just chill out...and buy lots more books.
I'm just fininshing the last of a lovely bottle of Beajoulais (not all by myself I hasten to add) and I have to say that despite all the high street credit crunching concerns, I'm blissfully happy. I work in an industry that I love, I co own my own gorgeous little bookshop, I have a rather funky (if a little battered) flat, and mostly mostly mostly, I have the most special girlfriend and baby daughter in the world. I might have to work for 32 days in a row, and I might not pay myself anything like what I was getting at Waterstones, but flippin 'eck i'm happy.
Look, see...and hairy, slightly feral and a little unsettling. But happy.