Remember when you could go out, have a meal and a few drinks and not wonder if you’ve brought home a virus? Me too. Going anywhere and feeling safe from the coronavirus doesn’t seem to be something we can expect anytime soon. It’s a challenging and uncertain time.
On the plus side, this whole experience is helping me to live in the present because each day becomes more uncertain if I look ahead. In Melbourne, Australia, housing commission flats have been locked down by police, affecting some 3,000 residents, because the virus has been detected in clusters and the spread is going to be unavoidable in the cramped conditions they live in, with the shared stairwells and lifts. That’s what we’ve been told. Most of the north of the city is in lock down with people only being able to go to work or the supermarket, visit a loved one or seek medical care. Today, Victorian borders are closed to all the other states in Australia.
Yet in all of this, there have been over 10,000 refused tests in the hot spots, and denial that the corona virus exists. I just don’t get how people can watch global news and maintain conspiracy theories about the virus or claim it’s a hoax. Each to his own, but these people put others at risk.
These things affect my writing and how I feel. Some days are better than others. Every day I wish the virus would just up and go or there was a vaccine. But this is the life we lead now. So, I’m coping by channelling that anxiety as best I can, when I can, into my writing to create more work and improve my craft.
One thing I remind myself when I’m feeling down, is that success outweighs failure. In fact, success is in part because of the failure. Each rejection teaches me something, each 'no thanks we'll pass' makes me work harder.
Thanks to corona, I’ve set up an online writers’ group and I’m writing more than I ever have. I’m loving exploring my own work, learning from others and always working to improve. Aside from that, it’s one foot in front of the other – mainly around my house!
But, amid all the chaos, I’ve had a few things going on that are pretty fabulous.
The most exciting writing one is that my application for an Australasian Horror Writers Association Mentorship was successful, and as of this week I’ll be working with Kaaron Warren on improving my short stories. So watch out! I’m ready to be inspired and influenced by Kaaron’s amazing storytelling ability! Thanks so much to Kaaron and the AHWA.
If you don’t know Kaaron yet, you should definitely check her out. Into Bones Like Oil is the book I’ll be reading next.
Right now, I’ve another editing project on the boil. I'll be working with Geneve Flynn on Trickster’s Treats 4: Coming, Buried or Not! , a charity anthology from Things in the Well, opening for submissions on 15 July.
Ciao for now.