Writing Wednesday: IWSG Apr 2020

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Today’s question for Insecure Writer’s Support Group was crafted for the circumstances we find ourselves in right now: …in this time when our world is in crisis with the covid-19 pandemic, our optional question this month is: how are things in your world? What follows is my response, mostly unfiltered (and eventually related to writing). Hopefully it makes sense.

Up until a few days ago, my life hadn’t been affected much by social distancing standards. I have been primarily working from home since October, I already home school my daughter, and my husband and son both work at a restaurant that hasn’t shut down yet. The uncertainty was there, and I spent a lot more time paying attention to current affairs and planning for the future than normal. Watching the dominoes fall so quickly as large events were cancelled or postponed (my husband and I had tickets for 2 different concerts this spring, and when the first one was postponed a few weeks back, that’s when this started to get a lot more real to me), then schools closed down, then smaller events were cancelled was all very distracting. But my daily routine, at least, was largely unaffected. (Though my son’s 18th birthday was yesterday, so it was sad knowing we couldn’t do that much for him right now. We have future plans, but not knowing when those future plans can actually happen doesn’t help a lot.)

Just two days ago, the person I work for told me to shut down the work I was doing for now. I’d been expecting it to happen eventually, but that didn’t make it any less jarring when it did happen. It was a nice job–fun and paid very well. And I was a sub-contractor, not an employee, so I’m not even sure if I can get unemployment. But that’s not the point. Not only do I now no longer have that income, I also have more time on my hands.

What this should mean is that I have more time for my writing. Fundamentally, I know that’s true. But I have already found it more difficult to spend time on it during the last few weeks, when I wasn’t even as directly affected, because of everything that’s been happening. And now? I haven’t touched it since Sunday. I just want to spend my evenings (the time I normally am able to devote to writing) reading and playing video games. Shutting down the creative part of my mind.

Today is a good day for this, though. The first session of Camp NaNoWriMo for the year starts today (the 2nd session is in July). It’s just what I need to get back on track. Unlike NaNoWriMo proper, where I stick to the traditional 50k words of writing a new piece, I allow myself to rebel during Camp (and usually do). I’ll just continue on with the revision I’m doing for the 2nd book in my new series, with a daily goal of 45 minutes per day spent working on it. Compared to the amount of time I’ve been working on it lately, it’s a very lofty goal, but if I can do it, it will bring me miles toward being ready to publish this 2nd book. And if anything can put me back into place, it’s NaNoWriMo.

Before I sign off for this post, I just want to add that if anything I said in this post sounds like I’m complaining, it’s not intended that way. I have nothing to complain about. My family still has some income right now, we have plenty of food (we tend to stock ahead anyway, so already had a lot) and even some toilet paper, and no one close to me has gotten sick from this virus. I have many books on my shelves that I haven’t read and access to digital books (and games) with the click of a button or two. And if the worst happens, I know where my home is. I won’t pretend that this isn’t a scary situation, but I have a lot more peace than what makes sense, because I know that whatever happens, God is in control.

For my fellow writers, and anyone else reading this blog–how are things in your world?

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10 thoughts on “Writing Wednesday: IWSG Apr 2020

    • I know it’s different from those who have gotten sick, but for those of us who haven’t and are simply staying home, different but still well is not too bad, and it’s something we can hold on to. Thanks for your comment, and I wish you well also!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I agree. We can expect scenarios to unfold but when they actually do, it can be jarring. I’m glad you and yours are well. May we all find creative energy in this strangely evolving time. Happy IWSG Day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s probably because, even while I was expecting it, I didn’t know when it would happen, and of course hoped it would be later (while still holding out a tiny hope that it wouldn’t actually happen). I was also mid-project, which is always jarring to just drop. Happy IWSG Day to you as well, and thanks for commenting!

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  2. My husband and my son were due to go to a concert in Sydney last month, so yeah, when that got cancelled, things got real very quickly. It’s unfortunate as my son was looking forward to it, as it would have been his first. I think a lot of us are finding it hard to concentrate lately, so don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s good that you’ve joined Camp NaNoWriMo to help you. I’m glad you and your family are all well. Stay safe!

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    • Both of our concerts have been rescheduled, but it’s anyone’s guess whether or not we’ll back out by the rescheduled dates. It’s amazing how much help just having a semi-public goal can be, and I’ve always appreciated NaNoWriMo’s events for that.

      Liked by 1 person

    • The project I’m working on will keep; I just hope we can minimize the danger from the virus itself in the meantime. Camp has already been a huge help, as I surpassed my daily goal of time working on revision yesterday.

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  3. Good luck with Camp NaNo! I’m trying that as well, for a tiny bit of writing structure. It can be hard to focus on writing right now, but I think it’ll help me to feel more in control of my life, at least. I hope it’s able to do the same for you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sometimes it just takes that external motivation to get me to focus on my writing again, and then my love of the story and characters takes back over. While there’s still more than normal to pull me back away again more quickly and more often, using Camp to bring my focus back daily will help a lot, and already is! Good luck with your own goal for Camp!

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