Define “Success”

Yeah, so, I worked really hard to come up with some new products and redesign my booth, and what it got me over the two-day craft market was….$20. And a front row seat to watch the ladies next to me and the man across from me rake in hundreds of dollars.  After the first day, I was definitely disappointed, but I rallied the next morning, buoyed by another opportunity to sell and a pre-opening sale to another vendor.  That enthusiasm evaporated by 2:30pm the second day.  I started to take down the trimmings of my canopy then and counted the minutes until 4pm when I could strike the display completely and go home.

It’s heartbreaking to work so hard on something you’re proud of and have nothing to show for it. Well, I did have TONS of compliments.  Dozens and dozens.  But being unable to convert any of those enthusiast responses into a sale just broke me.  I saw my brother after the show was over, and he was sympathetic.  My brother was an independent filmmaker for many years, and would often experience the same thing from the movers and shakers he’d meet in Hollywood.

You’re going places, young man.  You’re going to be big.

“So, does that mean you want to make my movie?”

“Oh, no, not this one.  But, keep in touch, okay?”

Again and again.

I’ve always tried to look at my experiences with this particular marketplace as a learning experience.  If I didn’t make any money, at least I worked on my social interactions, or got some insight into what draws people in.  I could convince myself I had some level of success based on those factors, and not just monetary ones.

That thinking didn’t really help me this time.

I won’t go into the details of all the thoughts and feelings I’ve had since the show wrapped, but, I will say, it’s been a struggle, and I haven’t wanted to even think about anything having to do with my business.  I know I’ll pick myself up, dust myself off, and yadda, yadda, yadda, but, let me just say, it’s hard.

Fall down seven times, stand up eight is great, except for the fact that you get bruised in the process, and may get up a bit slower each time.

But at least I’ll get up.

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