Coronavirus Diaries: Catherine Xu


Usually I want to work on preparatory sketches for my story, but I’m focusing more on portfolio artwork these days. This is one of my older pieces which I might recycle and use the concept of.

Catherine Xu

Coronavirus Diaries is a series of diary-type entries written by students and staff documenting the day to day activities and experiences in quarantine. If you are interested in submitting an entry, contact us at [email protected]

9:40 am: I get out of bed and toss on some clothes to go downstairs. I normally wake up at 10:30 but some of my teachers held live sessions in the morning to answer questions about AP tests and curriculum. If I get up early, I read through webtoons.

10:00 am: I go to the live session if there is one and eat breakfast while listening. I also usually text other people in the session to reconnect and see what’s up. So far these sessions have been very casual and funny things happen in the chat. I guess that’s to be expected when you put 20 or so socially deprived teenagers and give them all chat rights.

11:00 am: By this time I’m normally done with breakfast and have moved on to study. However, I usually end up not studying and doing other work or miscellaneous tasks. This primarily includes my responsibilities for Andromeda, the school literary arts magazine, but can also include researching comic-related topics, checking my email, or getting sidetracked on Reddit. 

1:30 pm: Lunchtime. I have leftovers for lunch most of the time. Today it was broccoli, pork, tomatoes and egg, shrimp and rice. Wow, that sounds like a lot but it was really a little of everything. I watch a variety of channels but today I watched Bon Appetit.

2:00 pm: I started following some comic creators on YouTube a while ago. So after lunch, I watch a couple of videos on scriptwriting and paneling. I check my social media sometimes; I think it’s entertaining to see my friends cook or bake or post random things. I continue doing minor things for Andromeda like assigning editing rights and get a text from Nayana asking if I wanted to write a diary entry. 

3:30 pm: I usually spend the afternoon working or writing stories. I have four thick AP review books, one for each core subject, and go through annotating and solving problems.

5:15 pm: I leave about 40 minutes to go downstairs and exercise on the elliptical. I can usually finish watching two youtube videos or one episode of Merlin during this time. Sometimes I have something I want to do that day (like painting for instance) and I’ll use this time to do that instead of exercising.

6:00 pm: My family and I usually eat dinner at 5:30, but lately when we’re stuck inside we’ve been eating later at around 6. 

7:00 pm: I go back to studying during this time and continue to do miscellaneous things like checking up on the Andromeda google classroom.

9:00 pm: I usually ask if I can go do my own stuff around 8:40 but I end up studying more because I feel bad for not working more efficiently and being lazy. I usually end up switching computers at around 9:20. This is the part of the day when I move to the study where I have my drawing tablet and my dad’s fun headset he bought for himself but I ended up using. Sometimes I’ll spend a little time building in Sims4, but most of the time I’m drawing and doing preparatory work for a webcomic I want to create. I’m not very fast at working and sometimes I wander to work on other projects. This is my biggest chunk of free time in the day, so I’m stuck between whether I want to FaceTime and socialize or work on my personal goals, as sometimes calling and drawing distracts me and decreases the quality of my work. I usually do the latter since most people can’t FaceTime around this time.

12:00 am: Time flies by once I sit down in the study. I aim to finish a character sheet every day but sometimes looking at references and anatomy makes it take longer than I’d like. Making a character look the same every time is quite hard and my characters are also young teens/preteens, which I’m not exactly used to drawing. Finally, around 12:00 or 12:30, I wrap up and go to bed.