When we closed Blue Ridge Creative at The Jacksonville Center at the end of 2006, I vowed not to try another studio in Floyd. I’m a decent photographer and good enough writer but not that great a businessman. Blue Ridge Creative drained our resources over its three-year run and I decided to work out of our home and concentrate on what I do best.
Then Woody Crenshaw offered me a prime location in the new Village Green and I decided to take a second chance at running a studio. So we signed on the dotted line, bought some furniture and equipment, and launched Blue Ridge Muse — the studio and gallery. With what looked like a prime location on Main Street, and the prospect of a high-traffic business like Nancy’s Candy just two doors down, it seemed like a good idea that couldn’t miss.
We opened in late 2007, just as the economy started going South. In 2008, we held on, hoping things would improve. They didn’t.
So Blue Ridge Muse will close its doors on October 31, 2009. Muse will continue as a community news web site but the location at 201 E. Main Street in Floyd is leaving the building.
Like so many other businesses — small, medium and large — Blue Ridge Muse becomes partly a victim of a stagnant economy and more of the victim of an owner who just couldn’t come up with a business plan that worked.
The primary fault lies with me. I’m not geared to run a business or sell products. I’m a writer and photographer and I need to be out there doing both, not sitting in a studio or at a desk. I’m a lousy businessman.
This is my second failure in five years since coming home to Floyd and it hurts. It hurts a lot. Amy and I put all of our heart, soul and resources into these two ventures and it will take us a long, long time to recover from the damage that both have wreaked on our morale and finances.
We will be holding sales over the next six weeks, offering reduced prices on photography. Our furniture and fixtures will also be for sale so feel free to drop by an make an offer.
Our thanks to those who supported our efforts. Your help has been much appreciated.