I’ve been keeping an ear to your world as I anxiously await the publication of When Life Was Still. I’ve been hearing whisperings that the entire trilogy will be available very soon.
When I checked in on Julie to see how she is managing her excitement level, I found her making a shopping list of the items she can’t live without in her coronavirus bunker. She hasn’t been diagnosed with coronavirus and hasn’t been told to isolate herself because the virus hasn’t arrived to her community. But she is preparing for the worst-case scenario. Julie also told me she is trying to do something productive instead of worrying about loved ones who live where coronavirus has made its appearance.
I don’t fault Julie and her generation for fretting about the threat of a pandemic because they have lived a relatively comfortable life. I think it is difficult for modern people to accept the significant amount of loss that coronavirus could ultimately bring to their world. As I traveled through the pages of my world, I suffered considerably and knew no other way of being. But I also experienced great joy in my world, and I cherished every moment I was allowed to exist.
Due to her satirical comments about society, I’ve often wondered if Julie knows just how wonderful her American life is. Over the past five years, I’ve frequently whispered to her that, no matter what she is feeling about the difficulties her life presents, she might consider feeling thankful not to be traveling the path I was on, or that of someone less privileged. Julie takes a lot for granted, but her heart is in the right place. Her cynicism and intense concern is an extension of desiring the best life for every person. A coronavirus pandemic simply doesn’t fit in her idealized image of how life should be. I know that I’m the fictional character, but Julie is definitely the one who is prone to living in a fantasy world.
To distract her from things that make her anxious, I just told Julie a story about Fergus Sullivan from County Tipperary. Julie enjoyed it so much that she thought it would be an interesting spin-off story to share with those who are looking forward to the release of When Life Was Still. So I will start typing the story on Julie’s computer while she goes shopping for antibacterial wipes, toilet paper, and Hostess Snoballs. Julie tells me that if you would like instructions for how to get a free PDF of my short story, The King of County Tipperary, you should go to https://whenlifewasstill.com/sequels/ .
I look forward to seeing you soon in the pages of my book.
P.S. You twenty-first-century Americans have no idea how fortunate you are to be living in a world that has toilet paper.
© 2020 by Julie Ryan. All rights reserved
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