Self-isolating or being on lockdown is probably less of an issue for writers than many other people. Let’s face it, a lot of us voluntarily isolate anyway!
However, the issue raises questions in another way. I’m just coming to the final stages of my work-in-progress and, due to the current circumstances, will need to change all the dates since the time spans from June 2020 and June 2021 – with obviously no mention of Coronavirus, as when I began it, ‘Corona’ was nothing more innocuous than a lager.
Oh dear. This week I’ve been thinking – do I move the time in the story on a year, not knowing of course if Coronavirus might come back and therefore be a major world issue still, or move it further back, thereby potentially running the risk of making it less relevant. Hmm, questions, questions…
No doubt I’m not the only writer with this or a similar dilemma. In my next book, which I’m planning to start in summer, do I mention Coronavirus as it either still will be or will have been such a huge part of life, or do I avoid the subject all together?
That’s it – answered my own question. Who wants to either write or read even more about something we’re surrounded by day-in, day-out? Not me! No siree. No thanks very much. All that isolation, death, illness and job losses – hideous. If I remind myself why I read and why a lot of other people read – it’s to get away from all of that – escape, relax and enjoy, even if it’s just for the length of time we’re immersed in those beautiful pages.
So, no, I think I’ll keep Coronavirus out of it. And then we can elect to stay home for a nice reason – to read a book that makes us happy.