Online only

Published July 22, 2021, 12:12 AM

by Jullie Y. Daza

Medium Rare

Jullie Y. Daza

How can the days fly by so swiftly when what lies ahead is more of the same — routine, boredom . . .?

Before anyone offers an enlightening Einstein-like answer, let’s fast-forward to September, when Christmas unofficially begins. But before we do the countdown, there’s going to be a State of the Nation Address four days from now, after which the Ghost Month will descend upon us on Aug. 8, following which the circus will arrive with scaled-down trimmings of an abnormal election campaign.

Joey Concepcion and other forward-looking personalities wonder if Santa will arrive wearing a mask while the experts in IATF are optimistic that we will reach herd immunity by December. Me, I’m so looking forward to a bit of Christmas shopping in person now that I’m “fully vaccinated” and wholeheartedly convinced of the power of online selling.

According to Edson Guido, ABS-CBN data analytics, 74 million Filipinos or 67 percent of the population used internet in January 2021, spending 11 hours surfing each day, four hours higher than the global average. Of the 74 million, 80 percent or 56 million bought online, more than in other economies. Digital payments rose in value and volume, Edson wrote, despite the low download speed that’s the most expensive in Southeast Asia.

Looking back, lockdown or locked up, I had a good Christmas 2020. Working at night, I was able to turn out a book in under 365 days. And published it, with the unstinting support of my tech-savvy boss. Whether he secretly pitied me for doing everything single-handed the old-fashioned way, or he liked the title, Chinatown Is Not A Place, the book has undergone a second printing, yahoo! Shopping on Shopee? Just type the complete title of the book.

Chinatown’s cover designer, Penelope, showed me how to sell a book in cyberspace and produce results almost instantly. Now, not only can I keep track of the sales, I’ve the satisfaction of learning each buyer’s name; one of them gave the book five stars, thank you! On top of proving how easy shopping online can be, Penny did something I would have thought impossible or improbable. She included Etiquette for Mistresses (first published in 1992) in her Shopee store and, guess what, readers are buying!