A new survey of writers suggests there could be a flurry of books arising from the coronavirus lockdown.
Page Turner Awards, who conducted the research via their website and mailing list, say it shows writers have been more resilient, so we can expect a boom in the printed (or digital) word – in contrast with film and TV content, where productions have stalled. Among US writers, however, the picture is not so positive.The survey received 208 responses from writers in 15 countries, although the vast majority of replies (80%) were from the UK and US.
It showed that, overall, most writers have been able to write more since the lockdown started, indicating that the restrictions haven’t held back the writing community as they have many other fields of arts and entertainment.
Overall, 39% of writers are writing less during lockdown, but 61% are writing more or about the same because home-working has freed up more time, and less socializing means more writing time. Unfortunately, 33% of those who are writing more say it is because they have lost their job – particularly in the UK, where 70% of participants were part-time writers.
The main reasons for people writing less during lockdown are new demands on their time, such as caring for family, more home-working, and the need to do home-schooling.
Only one writer reported a serious block in creativity because of the stress of the situation.
In the US, the picture is less encouraging: 48% of writers surveyed are writing less – on average 30% less, and in many cases 100% less. Only 28% of the American writers surveyed have been able to write more.
Co-Founder of Page Turner Awards, Paula Sheridan said: “It’s wonderful to see that writers are determined to use an increase in their spare time to dedicate to their writing ambitions.”
The Page Turner Awards, sponsored by ProWritingAid, gives writers the chance to enter unpublished or published fiction and non-fiction books. A group of literary agents will read the work, and two writers are guaranteed to be published.
The awards closed for 2020 submissions at the end of June, but they will open in January 2021 with a Young Writer Award, Screenplay Award, Book Award, and the Writing Award.
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