In the before times, there was one sentiment I grew to hate whenever I was at a festival or something selling my stuff. Customers would ooh and ahh over things, then they’d say they had other booths to check out but they’d definitely come back & buy something. 9 out of 10 times, I never saw them again.
So I don’t know why it surprised me when a few of my friends would promise to buy books but never did or would come to those festivals but never did. Not only would it surprise me, it was hurtful. I understand when other things came up, but promising to buy something to someone who is barely able to rent a space or can’t buy an author’s copy for themselves and failing to follow through is extremely hard on them.
You shouldn’t buy something if you don’t want to spend the money on something, can’t afford it, or don’t want it, but you shouldn’t promise you’ll do something you won’t be doing. If you do want it, but can’t afford it now, say that you’ll buy it when you can afford it. If you think you may forget to make the purchase, ask that the person should remind you personally when it is in stores or the day before a festival. If you want to support a friend’s endeavors in a non-financial way, be their hype person. I have friends who just share links and that helps quite a bit. I do occasionally get sales that way. I have other friends who just cheer me on, but make no promises and that’s cool too.
Just please remember that friends who are writers, artists, and artisans asking you to support them need more than a couple of white lies. They need your support and they need sales.