I hate interruptions when I’m writing. The deeper I get into a story, the more I become a part of the story–I am the protagonist, the villain, the secondary characters. I am living where they live, seeing what they see, feeling their emotions. That is until…
The phone rings. My husband comes into the room and says, “I’m not interrupting, am I?” My buzzer goes off and tells me I need to get up and move around. My dog keeps bumping my leg, his way of saying it’s time for a potty break.
All at once life as we’ve known it is being interrupted. The interrupter is the Coronavirus. Two days ago I received notice that the Southwest Florida Writers Conference (a conference I was to attend on April 18, 2020) was canceled. Several agents had already canceled and others were thinking of canceling. People are afraid to fly and afraid to be in crowds.
I also saw on-line that the agents panel discussion planned during the Authors’ Guild March 10th Annual Meeting was canceled, along with the wine and cheese reception . (They did hold the annual meeting, but no wine and cheese.No wine and cheese?)
On a more personal level, my critique group is thinking of canceling face-to-face sessions. And, I’m hoping Patricia Averbach’s reading and book signing at Bookstore One in Sarasota this coming Sunday isn’t canceled. I plan on being there.
Since writers spend many hours alone writing, having to self-quarantine (stay home) wouldn’t be too difficult. But, we writers are not one-hundred percent independent. We depend on publishing houses to take what we’ve written and put it into forms others can read or listen to, and we need bookstores–on-line or with a physical presence–to sell what we’ve written. What happens if everyone stays home?
We are experiencing what SciFi writers have written about in multiple novels and short stories. We are now part of a drama. Our way of life is experiencing a huge interruption. So, what should we do?
My advice is do what the experts suggest: keep your immune system strong and wash your hands often and thoroughly. And, in addition to the above, take lots of notes. We will, one day, be writing about this, about the emotions, the fear, the victims and the heroes. One of these days, this will just be an interruption.