How Writers Around the Country Are Handling Creative Life in Quarantine
From the WMFA Podcast with Courtney Balestier
Writing can be lonely work; WMFA counters that with conversation. It’s a show about creativity and craft, where writer and host Courtney Balestier talks shop with some of today’s best writers and examines the issues we face when we do creative work. The mission of WMFA is to explore why we writers do what we do, so that we can do it with more intention, and how we do what we do, so that we can do it better.
This is an experimental episode of WMFA, featuring messages from writers around the country about how they’re handling creative life in quarantine. Let us know if you liked this episode—we might do more as this surreal reality continues!
From the episode:
Katy Simpson Smith: In lieu of a book tour, to keep my heart and mind busy, I’ve been gardening. I started reading Proust’s Remembrance of Things Past and I videotaped myself dancing to The Weeknd’s song “Blinding Light.” So when I feel glum, I can just play the video again.
Aaron Jackson: My book The Astonishing Life of August March comes out April 7th from HarperCollins. Staying creative in the quarantine is doing lots of reading, getting through my to-be-read list much faster than normal. I’m currently reading Carrie Fisher’s Postcards from the Edge, which is fun. I love Carrie Fisher, so that’s nice. As for writing, I also write screenplays and I write those with my writing partner, Josh Sharp. That’s actually been nice because it’s both creative and a nice social outlet. We’ve been getting together on Xoom and Skype and all of that, so that’s helping me stay sane. Oher than that, lots of television and films and tearing through those.
Kristin Harmel: Like so many authors, I had to cancel my book tour, which has just been heartbreaking because I was really looking forward to getting out on the road and meeting bookseller and readers. This is really the time of year that every author I know really looks forward, to just being able to get out and talk about our book and meet people. During this time where we’ve all be told to stay home, I’ve been spending a lot of time with my 4 year old son. He’s done a lot of puzzles and Lego sets, and I am reading a few books that had been on my nightstand but I haven’t gotten to yet. I’ve really been reaching out to a lot of the bookstores that have been good to me in the past and talking to them about how I can help. I really think that a lot of these bookstores are going to be facing very difficult times in the weeks to come, and it’s important to support them in whatever way we can. I would encourage anyone listening to do the same. It’s a great time to get engaged with your local literary community.
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