For those of you with published books, myself included, November was a total disappointment in sales. Now, I've read a few blogs by more enlightened people than myself, and this is the way it goes. People are gearing up for the holidays and the extra money they use to buy books, they're now using for themselves.
We can't fault them for that. I do the same thing.
Come December 26, all will be right in our little worlds again, because of all the gift cards and shiny new e-readers given as gifts. Yay for us.
However, in studying my stats for November, I also remember that Hurricane Sandy hit during the first week in November. In 1991 Hurricane Bob hit Rhode Island and I was homeless for 6 weeks. My beloved beach house where I lived was wrecked beyond comprehension. Rocks filled the driveway, the yard, my 200 gallon propane tank that I used for heating and cooking floated in the estuary behind the house, the National Guard wouldn't let us come down the road to survey the damage, Coastal Resources wanted to condemn the house although it was still standing.
My world was thrown for a giant loop, trying to work, figure out which friend I could bum a couch off to sleep on or a shower, what to do with my dog. I slept in my car for week on the public beach. It was a nightmare to be sure. No, I didn't lose my stuff, I had days to move my things to higher ground, but I did lose my home.
That hurricane was a lesson I've never forgotten. It doesn't matter what you have, the stuff you accumulate through the years. What matters is that you survive the bad things that happen. That you, and your children and your pets are okay. Towels, kitchen gadgets, furniture can be replaced. Human lives cannot.
After surviving a disaster like Hurricane Bob, I know how those people who lived through Hurricane Sandy feel. Shock and awe comes to mind, then the mind-numbing emotional crippling -- What are we going to do now?
So, as we all commiserate our falling sales, can we just remember there are people who have lost so much more than that. Our lives will be on the upswing in just a few more weeks. For those people who have lived through Hurricane Sandy, they will be recovering for months or years to come.
Let's keep November in perspective.