When I started writing my novel, it began as a short story about a cook, and grew into the story of a xeno-nutritionist in space.
I wrote the story of how he came to be just where he wanted to be, at a time when he was needed most. Unfortunately, he appeared to be needed most at the outbreak of a virus like illness. More unfortunately, I completed my novel when COVID19 broke out.
Many people see no advantages to the stay-at-home orders and the social distancing, but there are some who inadvertently are benefiting. TV companies, authors and board game manufacturers may actually see an upturn in the demand for their products. To be fair to them, in most cases, they have both recognized this, and chosen not to take advantage of the situation. Many cable companies are freezing fees, or cutting overage charges. Authors are discounting their books to allow people to buy them more cheaply.
But what of those books just released or about to be released where a virus features heavily? Is there interest in reading about a virus overcome by science, and victory in the face of adversity, or is it too close to home for comfort. Does it matter that, in fact, the danger is not a virus, but is ‘virus like’?
Will it matter that most of the book is not about the ‘virus like’ situation at all, and it is not the focus of the book. Is it ethical to want to hurry up and publish now to take advantage of the situation? Does it matter that my novel was already “coming soon” before COVID19 had been heard of?
The saying goes “Published and be damned.” and perhaps my choice will lead to that.