I’ve finished writing the Love in Lockdown stories that I’ve been working on ever since we self-quarantined last Spring. The main book will be available in November, along with two 'samplers' with three stories in each E-book.
I wanted to write about the pandemic from the vantage point of older women in lockdown and the challenges we face—as well as the opportunities. Finishing and editing a manuscript in seven months has been its own challenge. And because this material is time sensitive, I decided to try self-publishing this time.
So now we are in the throes of publishing my new collection of thirteen stories, The Erotic Pandemic Ball: Tales of Love in Lockdown. This collection is about the love lives of women in an active senior community who live in strict lockdown conditions during the pandemic. So how do they get it on? You’ll be surprised. With the help of a friendly vampire, a bit of time travel and an overly inquisitive frog, it’s the most fun you can have with a mask on.
In addition to the main collection, I am also publishing two Love in Lockdown samplers of three stories each, which will be a free eBooks on multiple platforms. These are stories of women past midlife in New York and California who find ways to express their sexuality during the pandemic. We are in the nuts-and bolts-stage right now, deciding on cover designs, making galley edits, finalizing back cover text, and all the other steps I remember from working with two publishers on past books—but now we are doing it ourselves, for three manuscripts simultaneously. I'm learning a lot!
As we approach completion on this project, I’m starting to think about what comes next. My favorite writing teacher always says, “Go home with the one that brung you,” by which he means, finish one book before you start the next. But then there’s Stephen King, who always has one first draft going, plus editing another draft, plus publicizing a third, newly published book. I wonder what it would be like to write two books at a time? This lockdown phase, when our calendars have emptied out, may be the perfect time to try. Stay tuned!
I hope you are well and safe, and finding ways to make the most of this strange interlude in our lives. May you stay connected with the people you care about, whether through online conversation or talking by phone or writing letters. Let people know you care, however you can do it.
And take good care of yourself.
Write about your days as you live them now. Write about your memories. Write your stories. And read what others are writing about this phase of life. Get out into nature if you can, and if you can’t get out, grow a plant on your window sill. The world moves on, the seasons change, no matter what our temporary limits may be. We will look back on this time in wonder, a year from now. We will wonder how we did it and be proud of ourselves for making it through.
Do let me know if you are a woman past midlife who is interested in an online Elderotica writing group. Drop me a line. You do not need to be an experienced writer. All you need is a sense of play and a willingness to walk new paths.
Best of luck to us all for a healing November.