Why self-isolation is different to my summer holidays

My friends tell me my life self-isolating to break the spread of Covid-19 is exactly the same as my summer holidays. Here’s why they’re so wrong.

On 26 March, the whole of New Zealand went into self-isolation at home. Well, everyone except those with important jobs required to keep us all alive, such as medical professionals, couriers, farmers, Covid-19 researchers, and supermarket checkout operators.

I am not an essential worker, though I have the uncertain delight of being able to work from home.

Delight because being able to earn income allows me to buy books, which makes me happy. Uncertain because having the Prime Minister to tell you not to go to work is the adult version of getting a note from your mum saying you’re excused from gym class. (Or PE, as we call it.)

But I have to go anyway.

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What we all need right now: pictures of cute animals

We’re living through a momentous time in history, which means that right now life is scary and it sucks. I know you don’t want to hear more about the coronapocalypse, so here are some cute animals to brighten your day.

I wanted to write a blog post to reach out to people who are having a hard time in the pandemic–and that’s a lot of people–but the last thing most people want to hear is more about coronavirus. And that’s a problem, because right now coronavirus is all I can think about.

Finally I figured out a solution: cute animal pictures.

You’re welcome.

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What you can learn from a thousand times

I believe you can become awesome at the stomping unicorn backhand–or many other things–in just one day. Here’s how.

I heard a great story once.

The story

A visiting instructor once gave a two-day seminar at my tennis** club, and he told us about a similar seminar he’d given at a different club.

** The sport has been changed to protect the identities of the innocent. I don’t know tennis from snail polo.

On the first day, he’d taught the class a move called the stomping unicorn backhand. Most of the more advanced students were familiar with the stomping unicorn, but it was sparkling new for the less experienced students.

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The kind of book I love to read and want to write

I describe my ideal book–a high fantasy novel that takes me on an emotional journey–and offer to beta read for you if you wrote it. Or if you’re nice.

When friends in real life ask me what kind of books I write, I tell them “fantasy with dragons”. This has the benefit of being a) true and b) uninformative.

What? Not all books have dragons?

The short answer is that I write the kinds of books I most like to read. (Doesn’t everyone?)

Here’s the long answer about what I love to read and try to write.

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The glorious driveway from hell strikes again

I explain why for three months I’ve been walking nearly a km between my house and my car each day. The driveway did it.

November was an exciting month.

An electrical storm knocked out our power for two days, broke our internet for a month, and washed out our driveway.

You remember the driveway. Eight hundred metres winding up a hill through native bush, home to quail, glow worms, New Zealand freshwater crayfish, and a rabbit called Nicholas Augustus.

But I was talking about November.

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