So… now seems to be the time I can mention that last week I met an agent. It was a chance meeting while I was working my booth in Almonte, ON at the Lanark Highland Games. She gave me her card and we arranged to meet on Monday August 29th after I finished my 40hrs-week job. After 2 hours, I was still uncertain. It seemed surreal that this person, Raya, would want to take me on as one of her “Made in Canada” clients. I didn’t know quite what to think but was willing to give it a go.
Raya is an honest-to-goodness, old fashioned, door-to-door salesperson who brings artists and small retailers together. Her business is called, “Anything is Possible,” and she carries at least 2 massive binders with her when showing her artist’s work to any one of her 400 retailers across Canada. She does not use an i-Pad to show the works as internet connections in some of the communities she visits is still spotty. She supplies the smaller communities with independent locations and allows the big cities to take care of themselves.
Well! In the last week, I have shipped PO’s to retailers in 3 surrounding communities, Westport ON (Far Vision), Barry’s Bay, ON (Gift it Gray), and Wakefield, QC (Jamboree) and am waiting for a 4th location in Perth, ON to shift physical location before sending their order (Ground Waves). Last night while speaking with Raya – she’s currently on the road – I find she has another PO for me from a Duty Free shop on Hill Island. She will be visiting 2 more of her retail clients today in Bloomfield and Brighton. Wow! How did I get to be so fortunate? Of course, this is not a free service. Her commission is very reasonable and she will not allow payment until I am paid for my orders. Even then, she’d prefer it as one lump transaction once a month.
Next month, Raya is heading out west to BC and will visit some of her retail clients there. If you are a gardener or appreciate gardens, you will know of Butchart Garden on Vancouver Island. Well… they are one of her many retail clients that she will be visiting on this trip.
I have more great news. My very kind neighbour, and friend, Diane, a retired (though still working) tax consultant has taken on the task of sorting my financial situation out. I know nothing about accounting. Mix that with a Business Credit Card that will not allow me to lock it in as my PayPal Card, or allow me to pay customs and duties for intl. shipments of materials, thereby causing me to use my Personal Credit Card… and, “Houston…. We have a problem.” I’d forgotten what her profession was until we were chatting by the mailbox last week. Now my accountant will be happy at tax time. I can see my desktop, counter-top, sideboard top, tabletop, shelf tops… You get the picture? Only raw materials and completed dragonflies clutter my home… not paperwork. And we’ve agreed to a retainer! I will try to keep things easy for her, thereby easy for me. I am so grateful to have her in my corner.
I can’t yet imagine higher praise than that given by a customer whom I met at the Lanark Highland Games. After purchasing 5 Darbys, she contacted me to purchase 25 more for a personal event she’ll be hosting later this fall. In her signature block I noticed a link that was her name followed by “.com” I know of no-one personally with their name on the front side of a “.com” so I clicked on it. To my amazement, my customer is an international art appraiser who has worked for the Canadian Federal Government for over 2 decades, even posted to European embassies, where she appraises art pieces. She believes my dragonflies are appropriate for gift giving at her celebration. I’m astounded! Really? Thank-you Erica.
One troubling point I should mention. Heck, this is REAL life. It can’t all be rosy. I’m having difficulty finding the stock I need to produce my butterfly wings. The copper I currently use comes to me in a width too small for a butterfly wing. It’s a hurdle that might see butterflies put on the back-burner. I will not produce an inferior product for my customers. Until such time as I can locate the raw materials I need… well… I’m sorry for any inconvenience I may have caused butterfly lovers and those who thought they had that special someone’s Christmas present dialed in. I’ve not given up. Just giving a “Head’s Up“.
Finishing on a high note… Kitchesippi Brewery wants me to read my Fancifull Stories to children during Reading Time events that they plan to host. I’m so excited for this opportunity. You may have read a story or two of mine over the years. I do like to write, when I can find the time. Nothing deep or profound… but light reads to get your mind off your troubles and nudge it towards your dreams and desires. Happy reads. I live only a 2 minute walk from the new Kitchesippi Brewery location. Oh, and it appears that Dexter might be sticking around at Kitchesippi too… with some of his Fancifull friends.
Sue, Axie, and all the Fancifulls … and what are your thoughts on ‘Spirit Dragonflies?’