In her Open Book Blog Hop, Stevie asks:
Has the pandemic affected your writing? If so, how? Have your writing habits changed in reaction to the ‘different’ world we are faced with?
Okay, it’s a tricky one this week, just because I’m not a writer. Not literature, anyway. So I’ll interpret the question as a more general regular activity rather than writing, specifically .
Actually, my regular activity is writing, but software rather than literature. And I ramped that down, just because there seemed to be more important things to be doing.
Over the last few years I’ve been doing some voluntary work. It is only calling people to chit-chat, but that human contact is important, especially when many of the clients are isolated anyway. At the start of lockdown, I said “if there is anything more I can do…” and my list doubled overnight!
Ostensibly, it was tangible things, “do you have enough food?”, but over time the intangible came to the fore, people’s mental health. Some people went crazy, while for others lockdown was no different to any other day. Please take a moment to let that sink in – some people are forced to live every day as though they are locked down. But while that is terrible, when lockdown did happen, these people already had their logistics sorted. Many people are still locked down (from February, they have never not been locked down) and I am still in contact with them.
So, there was one “regular activity” which got ramped up.
Another was blogging. Before, I posted 3-4 times per week, but I thought it was important to put out some kind of regular “heartbeat” message. Because when we post, whatever the subject, we’re also saying “I am OK”. It’s weird, because there’s nothing we can actually do if somebody isn’t OK, but we care anyway. I do, I’m sure you do, too.
So I started posting daily. I got involved with a few more prompts, which helped find something to write about. A lot of these were just links to a song or a photo, but I was posting daily. And, I tried my hand at fiction and poetry, because… why not? Between you and me, I’m really pleased with how the poetry has gone – absolute nonsense but I enjoy writing it, I find it easy, and people seem to like reading it.
So while I’m not so sure I’d measure volume, I’ve certainly found my scope has broadened.