I find that I have very little interesting to say on the twenty-first day of our isolation. I know I’m not alone, but this is the longest I’ve ever gone in my adult life without some sort of social interaction. It’s…weird. Every day resembles the last, and the next. Wake up, get coffee, read, write, nap, then try to write some more. At five-ish we start cooking dinner and then we eat seven-ish. Then it’s a movie or a TV series and then off to bed. Rinse and repeat. And repeat.

I’m pretty well suited for this existence, being an introvert and moderately addicted to my laptop screen and Internet access. And writing a novel certainly helps pass the time. But even that is fading. After three solid weeks of progress, I’m stuck in the writing. I’ve got the entire story told and I’m tapped out at about 60,000 words. Modern, publishable novels should come in at 75-100K words, so I’m definitely on the short side. But just writing little vignettes to increase word count isn’t a good strategy, as my writer-wife warns me. So I think I’ll take a week, do some edits and tightening up, and I may call it a day for this first novel. We’ll see.

I’ve never been a marathoner, in any aspect of life. Always a sprinter, literally and figuratively. So the prospect of another month or more of this is daunting. But…I have little or no choice. If it must be a marathon, I’ll run it.

I know we are luckier than most. We’re both healthy at present. We don’t have to worry about paying the bills. When I retired 18 months ago I made certain that wouldn’t be an issue. (Though the market crash of the last month has made the end years a little less certain.) We have plenty of food and water. And we have five acres on which we can get out and walk around without feeling exposed or shamed. So I really have nothing to whine about.

One break every couple of days has been staying in touch with friends and family. Every call, chat or video session is great. The isolation sure makes it clear who you care about and why. I’m thankful that we have a rich set of friends and family, so we’re only isolated physically. We’re alone but not lonely.

The featured image at the top of this post is a view from our back deck. Another little thing to be thankful for.

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