Discover more from Bury Me in New Jersey
When author and director Heather Quinlan first started writing her book, Plagues, Pandemics and Viruses: From the Plague of Athens to Covid 19, COVID-19 had yet to emerge. Originally setting out to write a book on the Black Death, her publisher encouraged her to broaden her topic to include a more in-depth look on how widespread disease has affected and shaped our history and culture. As the past year continues to unfold, the timing for this book could not be more relevant.
Quinlan attributes her interest in the topics she covers what her grandmother explains as being “damn Irish”–a natural tendency to be drawn to the dark and the morbid, which often offers inspiration for her projects, from writing this book to exploring local cemeteries.
In addition to sharing her passion projects on the subject of death and dying (and her dismay about her father’s final resting place), we also discuss some of her personal experiences with loss and what they’ve taught her about the human condition. Most recently, her experience with stepfather’s unexpected passing from a heart attack in a Costco in the late spring and the way the store workers stayed with him (the General Manager holding his hand while they waited for help to arrive), despite heightened fears during these strange times, helped to reinforce the general good of others, despite what we often hear on the news.
Visit Heather’s website to learn more about the things she’s working on and how to follow along.