02493: Quarantine Stories

Transformers: Buster and Thundercracker

Metro Manila Community Quarantine - Day 135

My recent fascination with the LGBT web series Gameboys has me thinking a lot more about quarantine-related stories. That's one of the unique appeals of that show - how they found a way to really capture a lot of what makes this period of history so unique as part of their narrative. Anyone can tell a story that uses modern communication methods as a primary narrative device - we've seen our share of movies that play with instant messaging or even Facebook exchanges. So that aspect of the show doesn't define the quarantine experience.

But this lockdown is ripe with a lot of unique constraints that are instantly relatable to so many people. We're talking about limited movement, the need for quarantine passes, people shifting to work from home, and other aspects of our "new normal" lives. We're talking about a large collection of unique situations that are suddenly relatable to a national (and to some degree global) situation. And maybe that's something worth exploring in a story.

The real question is what kind of a story would one want to tell that uses the quarantine as a setting and not necessarily a focus. And it's this part of the creative writing process that always stymies me whenever I think about writing. It's always difficult to answer the question of what exactly do I want to say through my writing? Then I get stuck and never really get anywhere.

But I've been trying to give this more thought as of late, especially given how off-kilter I was feeling last week. As the media loves to say, we're living in "unprecedented times". It's not as in your face as a world war, but it is a strange and uniquely transformative human experience that so many people will be able to relate to.

And where will I write this stuff? I do enjoy blogging my writing attempts and both this blog and the Geeky Guide have their share of my past writing efforts memorialized as posts. But now this blog is locked, so it's not a great vehicle for sharing a story. Then again, maybe I should just write the darn story and not care about getting more real-time feedback. I can just start a Word document or a Google Doc and get typing. But I dunno, that doesn't quite feel right just yet. 

This is a tremendous creative opportunity. I just wish that was enough to light the spark of creativity in my end and help me get something out there.