Photoshop Friday

Lately, we’ve all heard a lot of talk about the Swine Flu. Seems like people are in a total hysteria over it. But most people don’t know that there is a related, but even more deadly viral strain out there.

The Writer’s Flu H1W1; Do you know the symptoms?

One of the first symptoms that manifests is what we call the glaze. Hypnotic staring at computer screens, printed manuscripts, and notebooks. Sufferers of the Writer Flu have been known to be lost in these trances for up to several hours at a time. Productivity during these trances is unreliable.

During what is known as the drafting stage of H1W1, many have complained of a highly complex form of schizophrenia, resulting in a constant presence of character voices in their head. The voices are said to not stop until they are “satisfied” with output of the sufferer.

In later stages of the Writer Flu, patients have been known to suffer severe manic/depressive episodes. There is a huge spike of these symptoms during the editing stage.

And on a final note, many have reported a symptom through every stage of the Writer’s Flu involving torture by doubt demons, however the existence of said demons has never been medically confirmed. (All the same you might want to keep your eyes open.)

If you should feel any of these symptoms . . . join the club. 🙂



  1. Kasie West on October 9, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    Oh no! I have H1W1. I knew I was feeling out of sorts for the last 2 years or so. Is there a known cure? A vaccination? A shot?

    btw, I love that first pic of your daughter. It makes me laugh every time.

  2. Amanda Hannah on October 9, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    So awesome. . .and eerily spot on, Dr. Renee.

  3. sraasch on October 9, 2009 at 5:20 pm

    That first pic is AWESOME. How did you get her to make that face?

  4. Natalie on October 9, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    I am new to your blog today and this was such a funny post to start on. I think all of these symptoms apply to me but I especially loved the bit about manic/depressive episodes. I have so been there.

  5. Renee Collins on October 9, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    Kasie-Alas, there is no cure. All the infected can do is ride it out.

    Amanda-Yes, I should have written this post long ago. Think of all the people I could have saved! It’s tragic.

    Sara-My daughter has a very expressive face naturally. 🙂 That picture came one night when we were eating dinner and talking about things we like to do. My daughter said, “This is what Mommy likes to do.”

    I later made her reenact the moment for the camera, but the expression is the same. 🙂

    Natalie-Welcome! And yeah, I go through the manic/depressive stage a few times a week. 🙂

  6. Hayley on October 9, 2009 at 9:26 pm

    Wow, I’m sick, and I thought it was normal…I love your blog, great pic about manic depressive, I’m totally like that sometimes 🙂

  7. Miriam S.Forster on October 9, 2009 at 10:06 pm

    Yep, I’m definitely in the latter stages of H1W1. I need a big fat shot of accept-the-things-I-cannot-change. 🙂

    (And quite possibly a dose of Nanowrimo to re-energize me.)

  8. storyqueen on October 9, 2009 at 10:33 pm


    Too funny.

    And I’m awesome and I suck, too!!

    Wishing for a cure.


  9. Kirsten Hubbard on October 10, 2009 at 1:46 am

    you are hilarious. I’m so glad I found this blog.

  10. Jessie Oliveros on October 10, 2009 at 2:15 am

    So what is the cure? You invented it so you have to invent a cure. Or better yet, a vaccination. I could really use it. NOW.

  11. Renee Collins on October 10, 2009 at 4:12 am

    Hayley-Alas, I’ve yet to meet a “normal” writer. 🙂 (Glad you like my blog!)

    Miriam-NaNoWriMo, or forcing yourself to work on something else has been know to alleviate some of the symptoms. However some would argue that it creates new ones . . . but that’s a matter for another post. 🙂

    Shelly-Thanks! I’m still working on that cure . . .

    Kirsten-I’m so pleased that you like my blog. 🙂

    Jessie-My high tech team of medical specialists are working around the clock to develop a cure. Until then, we must suffer in solidarity.

  12. Lady Glamis on October 10, 2009 at 5:00 pm

    Once again, I’m laughing so hard! I think I have that flue. UGH.

  13. Diane on October 10, 2009 at 10:16 pm

    Funny! How about the tired sore buttocks stage? I think I’ve had that one too. :O)

  14. JaneyV on October 11, 2009 at 11:18 am

    I’m H1W1 free right now due to not having written anything for a month. But I recognise all the symptoms. You may just have put me off going back to it!!!!

  15. Diana on October 12, 2009 at 3:19 am

    You need to publish all your Photoshop Fridays into a coffee table book Renee! They are too funny:)

  16. Renee Collins on October 12, 2009 at 3:50 am

    Michelle- 😀

    Diane-Oh yes, I definitely should have included that one! That, and sore wrists. 🙂

    Janey-See that’s the thing about the Writer Flu, the symptoms may go into remission, but they always come back. You better keep an eye out. 🙂

    Diana-Actually I’ve thought of printing them all off, just for my own amusement. A kind of scrapbook of my early writing days. 🙂

  17. Lady Glamis on October 12, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    I have no idea how I put E on the end of flu. How embarrassing. Ugh!