Creative and the Pandemic
Wow. 2020 has been a ride, huh? We are only half way through and it feels like the longest year of my life. If you follow me on Twitter, I'm sure you've seen exactly how well I am coping with this new normal. If you don't follow me, let me catch you up to speed: Not well.
Obviously, the world has been a mess the last few months between the pandemic, politics, social movements, and just general confusion on what to do next. I never want to minimize or distract from important real life situations. That being said, many people (myself included) go online, be creative, and otherwise decompress by taking a break from the real life craziness.
I will be the first to admit that I am not a disciplined writer. I write when I feel like it, when I have time, when an idea strikes, what have you. National Novel Writing Month aside, I don't have quotas or word counts I try to hit. I do attempt to keep deadlines that I set for myself, but I'm a push over. You can imagine that the world being flipped on its head and the looming threat of Covid-19 has not done much for me in terms of productivity.
Being an author that works when the mood strikes, I further embraced that mentality during the pandemic. Some days were just exhausting between working from home, reading the news, and trying to keep up with previous standards of living. Other days, I was so anxious about what the future may hold, I was up all night. Either way, I wrote and created when I felt like it.
Slowly, I am adjusting to this new world. Its hard. Where previously my office was used to write, play darts, and occasionally play some video games, I am now in this chair for at least eight hours a day as I work from home. My desire to sit in this chair any longer than eight hours is not always that great. My writing has been hit or miss in terms of productivity.
While I am missing personal deadlines (I feel absolutely no guilt over this) and I'm not writing as much as I used to, the days in which I write, I am writing significantly more. Normally, I would probably write about 3K a week over seven days. Now, I'll write 3K in one day and do nothing for the next six. I have mixed feelings about that, but I'm trying not to dictate when and how I write.
I am also branching out in what I do to fulfill my creative urges. I have made a few Youtube videos and found that, while recording videos still feels awkward and a bit weird, editing videos is incredibly fun. I've also decided to start streaming on Twitch when I play video games, which gives me the sense of human interaction I've been missing. I've also painted a bit, played some music, and designed some book covers. Its been great to just do whatever some days and not worry so much about it!
All of this is to say: Don't be so hard on yourself. The standards we lived by in 2019 don't exist in this world because the world from 2019 is gone. Its a scary time, a stressful time, and a lonely time. Just roll with the punches. Create when you can, survive when you must.