People often tell me their lives are too ‘boring’ and not exciting enough to write about. Well the global pandemic has certainly squashed that excuse! Nothing like grappling collectively with a world-wide emergency to shake us out of our comfort zone, make us reassess things, and figure out what is most important to us.
We are all part of history, and have our own unique story, and perspective on these extraordinary worldwide events. There is no better time to write about our struggles and triumphs, and to detail what we are thinking, experiencing and feeling. Imagine how important it will be in 100 years’ time, for our family members, researchers, historians and documentary makers to read our stories, and gain an insight into how we responded and dealt with this huge challenge.
I’m a great believer that storytelling is a vehicle for understanding the human condition, fostering connection and understanding, and providing a snapshot into the precious time we are alive on the planet. Let’s do our bit to contribute to the global narrative!
Have you written your pandemic story yet? Would you like to give it a go, but are not sure where to start? Check out these writing prompts below!
What thoughts and feelings have you experienced during the pandemic?
How has your life been affected – at home, at work, within your family?
How has the fear of transmission and vulnerability of loved ones impacted on you?
How did you adapt to the lockdown? In what ways did your daily life change? How did you stay connected with loved ones who weren’t in your bubble?
Think about all of the things you couldn’t do – and how regular things, such as going to cafes and socialising suddenly became ‘dangerous’. Write about this, and all the new hygiene measures you faced as you ventured out of your home.
How was your mental and physical health during lockdown? Did lockdown have a positive or negative impact on either or both?
What were the things you missed most during lockdown? What was the first thing you did when ‘freedom’ returned?
Think about words such as resilience, hardship, positivity, pride, fear, acceptance, calm, and how they might relate to your pandemic experience.
Do you have any lockdown ‘anecdotes’ (or stories) you can write about – things that happened to you, family members, or others in your circle? Perhaps your neighbourhood community grew stronger, you helped someone, or they helped you? Maybe you have a funny story to share?
What have been some silver linings or unexpected surprises/gifts from the pandemic? What is something you didn’t appreciate before, but which you value now? What have been some of the hardest losses or things you have grieved for?
Are there other ways you could express your pandemic story – through poetry, song, photos, videos or art?