Social Distancing and Writing Accountability
In the wake of the fast-spreading Corvid19 pandemic, we are facing many challenges. As writers, one is the message to practice social distancing. No, really, even the most introverted of us need human contact, especially when we’re told to avoid it.
But, Cheryl, you say, social distancing is what we live for. We’re experts! We could give lessons. You know, if we ever found ourselves in a room full of people who paid to listen to us, which won’t ever happen because, introverts.
Ok, I’ve got you. We need our alone time. But we also, cautiously, selectively, need human interaction. Writing groups. Critique groups. Our BWFF (best writing friend forever) reading our work. Once in a while we have to reach out to another human.
“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that once denied an object we don’t want, our want increases exponentially.” In other words, told we have to stay in, we suddenly want to go out. Maybe even touch base with someone who knows our #writerslife.
Social Distancing but Staying Connected
I’m seeing a trend on social media from people working from home, or those who no longer have jobs, for reading lists. Here’s what I propose:
- Leave a comment with a link to your book (provided you’re published)
- Follow Twitter hashtags #Quarantine, #StayHomeChallenge, #QuarantineLife. Leave a link, leave a comment, and follow someone new.
- Spread the word about an amazing book.
- Think about offering your book for free for a limited time.
- Leave a review. Tag the author to make their day.
- Share your published book (or a friend’s) or WIP. Leave a snippet in your feed.
- Write a blog post about what you’re going through during this difficult time.
Writing Accountability While in Isolation
Many of us belong to writing or critique groups that are suspended until this virus passes. How do we keep writing when we don’t have our usual support?
- Start or join a Facebook group. Gather your tribe and continue the conversation.
- Search for groups that do writing sprints, like this one: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1618991471575481/
- Use Skype or Zoom for meetings. I meet my accountability partner once a week on Zoom. Our schedule is fluid due to various commitments, but we make goals and check each other’s progress. Believe me, I don’t want to show up with unfulfilled goals.
Remember, in these trying times, you are not alone. Others have the same anxiety, uncertainties, and despair. The way back to normal (or a new normal if you’re into The Hero’s Journey) is support, community, and lifting each other up.
Keep writing and wash your hands.
This post is part of #AuthorToolboxBlogHop, a monthly event on the topic of resources and learning for authors. Feel free to hop around to the various blogs and see what you learn! Go here for the websites of all participants or use #AuthorToolboxBlogHop on Twitter.