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eTAIL TALE

"I think I'll offer a few of Elizabeth's cookbooks for sale during the holidays."

It was an innocent thought. A few people would log on and through the miracle of modern internet wizardry, they could purchase one of Elizabeth's cookbooks. I'm mindful of all the reports about people having lousy experiences buying from online companies, and Oasis Newsfeatures isn't Amazon.com. I'm essentially a one-man show. I sell columns to newspapers, popular columns like Elizabeth Coblentz's "Amish Cook" and Michelle Dresbold's "Handwriting Doctor." I didn't want my company tarred with the same negativity that has washed over other dot-coms. And this being my first time trying this, I was worried about glitches.

Now that it's over, I can look back at this holiday e-tailing season with some pride: over 95 percent of customers, probably closer to 98 percent, got their orders on time for Christmas. There were a few problems with the puzzle orders, and one or two cookbooks that did not arrive on time. If you are one of those people - and we've probably talked already - you have my profuse apologies. Please email me if you did not get your order on time, so I can offer you something in return. Overall, however, it was a very successful season.

It wasn't necessarily pretty, though. By Dec. 20 my living room had been transformed into a near war-zone, a collage of packing tape, bubble envelopes, mailing labels, and postage stamps. Compounding matters, the local post office ran out of the crucial $3.30 two-day priority mail stamps, which had me scrambling to another post office 10 miles away to get them. While driving there, I was licking and peeling the few stamps that I did have and affixing them to packages. I had no idea that such a tidal wave of tidings would come through The Amish Cook Shoppe. The first time is always a time of trial and error. Next year, I'll be 100 percent ready.

For a selection of Elizabeth's Christmas recipes, CLICK HERE to go to the Recipe of the Week.


Kevin Williams
Executive Editor
Oasis Newsfeatures