The economy has gone to shit.
Corporate greed remains unchecked.
We’re not being lied to, it’s called marketing.
Just four dollars more.
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     The Willowtrail Mall, a place once booming with activity, is all but a ghost town these days due to not just one, but several economic recessions. Joseph, a thirty something-something with low self esteem works at a struggling big-chain department store without functioning air conditioning and there’s bugs crawling under his skin. He’s been working here for far too many years without anything to show for it.
 But that all changes when he receives his annual performance review...


     COUNTER_culture is a comedic and damning look at the everyday plight of the serve-us industry workers in an economy that is slowly dying a death of a thousand payroll cuts. The author pulled from over seventeen years of experience working in corporate retail to create this fictional, but all too familiar, story of working in retail and the repercussions of PTSD as a result from it.

     It'd be sad if it wasn't happening everywhere...
     May as well have a laugh about it.

 

 

 

  Based on over seventeen years (oof!) experience in working not just retail, but corporate retail, this was a book I needed to write to help process some of the lingering effects of PTSD I've gained from it. While this is strictly a work of fiction, some aspects are directly based on my own experiences such as the nightmare that the book opens with.

  As I wrote it, I was shocked to learn just how many people share the exact same nightmare while working in a retail environment as detailed by online comments of users describing their experience with PTSD in retail. Here was multiple people writing their experiences that gave me pause to wonder if I'd written them and forgot about it... It told me one thing, that this was a much more common occurrence that is not being discussed...

 

  Nobody, ABSOLUTELY NOBODY, no matter the occupation should develop such recurring life-damaging events. Nobody should deal with frequent anxiety attacks in the morning shower while getting ready for another day of work. Nobody should have heart palpitations as they approach the building they work at while their knees go weak...

  Mental health and the stigma around it is reaching a crisis point as more and more people are breaking down and rejecting the current normal.

 

  I had to write this book.

 

  I mention it in the first chapter,this is both a comedy and a drama, like two twin siblings with different haircuts. I didn't want this to just be a drama because it'd bring me down just reliving the experiences for the sake of education. Let's try to have a laugh about it as well!

  It takes a very tongue in cheek look at corporations and exposes the aspects of them that marketing tries to cover up every single day.

  Anybody who works in the serve-us industry will find familiarity in this book. Anybody who's been fortunate enough to avoid it will see what it is like to live the daily struggle trying to survive an industry rife with rapacious greed. (Not that that's limited to corporate retail...)