Writing While the World Burns
Next year, my dream comes true. I will hold my book in my hands! It should be a time of excitement and joy, but when it’s time to work on my next novel, one I’m supremely excited about, I frequently stare at the screen. It’s not writer’s block holding me back- It’s the weight of the world.
I have two children, and my family has been ill since the beginning of school. But despite a notable lack of sleep, my gorgeous babies add to the awesomeness that is my life right now. Truly, how lucky am I? But writing is a constant battle against myself and the news cycle. How can I revel in my happiness when fresh atrocities are committed daily? How can I write my oddball pulp fantasy stories that seem insignificant next to the struggles of current times?
Here’s where I’m wrong, though. Yes, I’m seeing more evil in the world than ever before, but that’s not because it’s new. It’s because I’ve been bubble-wrapped. I believed we had made more progress than we have, a lie that much of the country embraced unless faced with harsh realities, but the brazenness of those in power has popped all the little bubbles. That’s not a bad thing. Marginalized voices have been yelling about similar atrocities since the dawn of time, at least, when they’ve been able to. So, here I am, a white girl from the upper middle class, crushed under the weight of what others have been fighting forever. Yet they continue on, and so shall I.
At this point, the only thing I’m capable of doing is listening, righting wrongs I see, voting to end those I don’t, helping in whatever meager way I can (check out the writerly auctions at AuthorsForFamilies.org!), and taking care of those I love. That includes me, and that means writing my stories. Because while a light needs to be shined on the wrongs, the light is blazing these days thanks to the internet! That’s a GOOD thing! But the world also needs the fleeting joys offered by escapist genre fiction, and holy shit, so do I.
- Sarah J. Sover, Author of the Upcoming Double-Crossing the Bridge