Lately I’ve been indulging in the favorite pastime of a recently-published author—I’m checking out how the book is doing on various online platforms.
When I hopped over to the UK version of Amazon, everything looked fine…at first. The eBook version of the book was there and available, just as I hoped. But when I clicked on the paperback version, although the cover of my book was still there, all the descriptive content changed to sell the reader something called “Mens Slim Fit Breathable Pocket Quick Drying Short Pants,” and all the sizing was Chinese.
I burst out laughing. My book is Chinese pants! What a time to be alive.
So what next? I got in touch with my publishing guide/mentor, who patiently walked me through how to report the problem to Amazon. At the same time, I took screenshots of my book in its new life as Chinese pants, and sent the pictures to my husband and kids because I knew they would think it was funny. They did, and we riffed on that theme for a while.
I felt really lucky to be able to laugh about the situation that my book and I found ourselves in. The situation didn’t derail my day, or put me in a bad mood. But to be completely honest, if this had been the US version of Amazon, I don’t think I would have been so tickled—and that’s where the lesson is for me.
How can I hold onto that sense of lightness, even when something goes wrong that hits a little closer to home? How can I work to keep perspective when something goes off the rails? What can I do to remember that most of my problems are like my book being Chinese pants—really funny, a little annoying, and ultimately fixable?
Go here to order Before You Say Anything: How to Have Better Conversations, Love Public Speaking, and Finally Know What to Do with Your Hands! If you’re an audiobook person, stay tuned. The audiobook version (read by me, full disclosure) will be available in October!