Hello, friends! Welcome to this month’s meeting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! If you’re a writer, and if you feel in any way insecure about your writing life, click here to learn more about this amazingly supportive group!
They say write what you know. Sometimes writers follow that advice without intending to. There’s a recurring theme in my writing. I never noticed it was there until my editor pointed it out. That theme is illness.
In the epic, sprawling Sci-Fi universe I’m creating for Tomorrow News Network, a lot of people get sick. There are lots of space viruses and space parasites floating around out there, some of them natural, others manmade (or rather, alien-made). I also tend to use disease as a metaphor for other things. When my editor pointed this out to me, my reaction was basically: “Oh, that makes sense.”
It’s become something of a running joke among my circle of friends. If there’s a big, scary disease in the news, James will probably catch it. I’ve had tuberculosis. I’ve had West Nile virus. I’ve had swine flu. To be honest, I’m surprised that I managed to dodge COVID-19 for as long as I have.
But last week, I found out that I’d been exposed to somebody who later tested positive for COVID. Shortly thereafter, I started experiencing COVID-like symptoms. I’m currently quarantined at home, waiting patiently for the results of my COVID test.
Needless to say: not a lot of writing is happening right now. Not a lot of anything is happening, except sleeping, chicken soup eating, and binge watching Carl Sagan videos on YouTube. But my muse assures me she will return as soon as I’m feeling better, and we’ll probably have another scary space plague to add to our epic Sci-Fi universe.