I’m sure you’ve heard about our supply chain problems, along with warnings about anything you might be ordering for Christmas. There’s an easy solution—buy local. We’ve become so dependent on those online retailers like Amazon I fear we’ve forgotten about our local small businesses. Yes, Amazon and the like have more choices and lower prices, but at what cost to our communities? And at what cost to our friends and neighbors who work at or own those businesses? Not to mention, those are the businesses that suffered most due to COVID shut-downs.
So, think about giving a gift certificate to your favorite restaurant. Check out that dress shop, hardware or toy store. Many small towns have craft and consignment shops where local artists sell their creations. This time of year, you can find great gift ideas at holiday arts and crafts fairs.
Random House defines an artist as “a person who practices one of the fine arts, esp. a painter or sculptor”. I would argue an artist is anyone who creates, including authors. Do you have book lovers on your to-buy-for list? Consider buying from an independently-published author. We don’t have the benefit of brick-and-mortar bookstore sales. We don’t have big publisher advertising. We rely on author/reader events (many of them still being cancelled due to COVID) and word of mouth. Be our word of mouth by giving our books as gifts, talking them up among your friends, and, just as important, write an online review—Amazon, Facebook, Goodreads, wherever your social media presence exists. Wherever your voice can be heard. Word of mouth.