So… how are you?
I mean it. How are you?
In my quiet household, where the animals don’t seem to be aware that anything’s wrong (except for Mowat’s amped-up need for evening cuddles as I watch The National), we are muddling along.
Talking every day with my mom, texting with my mother-in-law who is in self-quarantine after a recent overseas trip, checking in with my sister, a nurse at a hospital that had a recent COVID-19 death.
And, after several days of non-stop news, I am now re-orienting myself to what I need to stay sane: writing.
This morning, I finished editing a short story, and later on I will input the edits during an hour-long session in Farzana Doctor’s Writing Sprint group (join here, on Facebook).
This afternoon, at 2 p.m. Central, I will lead my now-daily 20-minute livestream writing session in my Facebook group, WriteRamble. Originally set up for clients and people who’ve taken workshops with me, I recently opened this group up for everyone (special times call for special supports).
So, every afternoon, I (or another host from my community) offer a way to connect, to see that others are out here in the world, maintaining our sanity by doing what we need most to do: putting pen to page.
At the start of the session, I offer an always-optional prompt, help people settle in, and then we write, in silence (unless my cat is being demanding), for 20 minutes.
It’s a simple but oh-so-very valuable thing (hopefully for others, but also for me!), whether you want to make progress on a novel, a memoir, a story, just see what comes, or drain some anxiety into your journal.
Sometimes, too, I have guest hosts who offer different sorts of prompts (tomorrow or Saturday my friend Conni will be leading). No expertise is needed to host other than being a writer (as in, a person who writes) and being willing to find a prompt to use. So, if you want to guest host, please do let me know, and I’ll put you on that list!
These days, I am honestly seeing the great value in our online connections as we stay isolated for the sake of the vulnerable, the immune-compromised, the healthcare workers, and so, if you are not on Facebook but would find value in something like this, please do let me know and I can run something similar on YouTube Live, that anyone on the Internet can access.
I wish you well in the coming days and weeks. I’ll continue to be here, offering these notes, and suggestions for staying grounded and well-adjusted in these challenging times. Another thing I’ve prioritized are daily walks with my family (and when I say family, I mean my whole immediate family, as you’ll see in this video… Enjoy :).
Let me know how you’re faring! What’s keeping you grounded? Please comment!