History as it Happens Writing Project

History as it Happens

We are living through history, and we are inviting you to chronicle these unprecedented times. That’s why we’re introducing the History as it Happens Writing Project. Someday in the future, people using our library will look back on this crisis and having first-hand accounts of what happened will be an incredibly valuable resource to future researchers, historians, and genealogists. Below are a list of writing prompts, borrowed from the Henderson County Public Library, to jumpstart your writing.

If you mention anyone by name, please make sure they are comfortable with their inclusion in your writing. If they’d rather not be mentioned, we recommend using a pseudonym in quotation marks.

Please feel free to submit your work to us in one of three ways:

      1. Mail it to us at 309 8th Street, Shelbyville, Kentucky, 40065;
      2. Send it in an email to our Adult Services Librarian at reference@scplibrary.net
      3. Submit it in a .pdf or .doc file on this website.

The best entries may be posted, with permission of the author, on our blog.

Writing Prompts

  • How long ago did you first hear about the virus? Did you pay much attention to the news of the virus when it did not affect the US? When did you start to realize that the virus might have an impact on your life?
  • Has anyone you know been in quarantine because of the virus? How was that person affected? How is that person coping, physically and mentally? How were you affected? How are you coping, physically and mentally?
  • What have you missed doing? Why do you miss those things?
  • Regarding the changes imposed because of the virus, which changes have had the biggest negative impact on you? What impact have they had?
  • Regarding the changes imposed because of the virus, have any of the changes had a positive impact on you? If so, what were they?
  • How have your shopping habits changed?
  • How have your eating habits changed?
  • If this were an ordinary day, what would you be doing? What are you not doing because of social distancing or other restrictions due to the virus?
  • What emotions have you felt in relation to the virus?
  • What emotions have you felt because of social distancing?
  • How have you adjusted to practicing social distancing?
  • If you’re in school, what is your prediction about when school will be held again?
  • If you’re in school, what are the ways that you are getting your education (how are your teachers sending and responding to your lessons)? How do you compare working from home to working at school?
  • If you’re in school, what are three things you miss about school? Why do you miss those?
  • If you’re in business, what is your prediction about when all business will be open again?
  • If you’re in business, what changes have you had to made for your business? Do you think you will keep any of these changes once the restrictions have been lifted? If you are working from home, how do you compare that to working at your place of employment?
  • If you’re in business, what are three things you miss about your business? Why do you miss those?
  • Have you had to do without any food or other items that you’d normally use or eat? If so, what are they and why can’t you get them?
  • What businesses do you miss going to? Why?
  • Because of the virus, have you contacted any friends or family members you don’t often speak with? Who were they (if you use pseudonyms, put quotation marks around the fake names)? What led you to connect with them? What did you learn from reconnecting with them?
  • Have you done any work that you’d been putting off? If so, what is it?
  • How well do you think local government has handled the situation of the virus?
  • How well do you think state government has handled the situation of the virus?
  • How well do you think national government has handled the situation of the virus?
  • Have you seen any instances of acts of kindness? If so, what are they?
  • Have you seen any instances of people behaving badly? If so, what are they? (If you use pseudonyms, put quotation marks around the fake names.)
  • What is something you wish you’d done before the restrictions began? Why didn’t you get that done?
  • What are three things you look forward to doing once the restrictions are lifted? Why did you choose those particular things?
  • What do you do for entertainment? What movies or television shows have you watched? What books have you read? What games have you played? What hobbies have you been enjoying?
  • What social media platforms have you used most often? What about these platforms has been helpful? What has not been helpful?
  • Did you have any travel plans that were disrupted? If so, what were the plans, and do you think you will be able to reschedule? Why or why not?
  • Have you experienced moments of sadness or fear? What were the circumstances behind those moments? What helped you get through those moments?
  • Have you experienced moments of hope or gratitude? What were the circumstances behind those moments? Have you shared your experiences with others?

Submit your Writing





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