(Re)Claiming the Joy in Writing by Patty Blount

This year has been like running on a treadmill stuck on a high speed. One false step and you're gonna go flying. 

All over my various author communities and indeed, this blog, colleagues are talking about how hard it's been to be creative this year. Feelings persist. We long for normalcy but yet, too few of us are willing to put in the effort to get it back. So...we're stuck. 

We're exhausted. We're losing hope. And we're tired of Zoom! 

Students have it even harder than authors. Trying to concentrate on lessons, missing out on friends, on sports, on SATs -- their futures are in a holding pattern.

I think about them. Just as I need to take my mind off of 2020, I think teens do, too. And that's my job as a YA author. So I made the decision NOT to write about the pandemic. I want teens to be able to lose themselves in my work. 

They can't do that unless I can. 

So I put it away. I know for one hour, one scene, one chapter, I can hop off that treadmill and put the world on hold for a while. I can find joy in the world I've created and hope readers will, too.

That's why I'm working on a YA Chrismas story. Christmas novels, especially romance, have huge readerships. I am certain it's because the holiday season fills us with hope and cheer. What will this year's holiday season look like? 

Scaled down, lots of masks in red and green, silver and gold, silver and blue, maybe Zoom parties. I don't know. 

What I do know is the feelings persist. And I try to write those feelings. Tell me how you're coping with pandemic-related stress in the comments! 


  1. It has been hard for sure, but ohhh...a YA Christmas novel? That sounds comforting for sure, both for writing AND reading. Sending hugs.

    1. I adore Christmas novels and there aren't many in the YA space so I hope this turns out well!


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