Intro or Extro?

In General, Musings on October 25, 2009 at 10:40 pm

cave photoI know that folks prefer easy categories–publishers sure do. Agents are partial to them, too. Of course what I like to write often defies easy categorizing, a flaw I have not yet been able to reconcile. When it comes time to pitch my work, I shove it into the most similar category I can find, like one might stuff a large foot into a gorgeous but too tight pairof shoes for an occasion.  This may be a result of my personality. Most people who know me would probably call me an extrovert. I’m good at socializing, I crave it, and I never go very long without some of it. But that would also overlook the introverted side of my nature. I am, I have decided, an introverted extrovert.

Say what?

Well, for example, I’ve just returned from a weekend of socializing. First at the wonderful Redwood Writer’s Conference (Kudos, y’all, for a job well done, especially for a 1st year!), then visiting half a day with friends, then my mother’s birthday party.

And now, home again for the first time since Friday, I don’t  want to visit my social network, forums or Twitter, where interaction is involved. I need to replenish. I’m socialized out. And this is also the place from which I write.

The extroversion is the “collection” side of my nature–I go out into the world and take in stimulus and impressions, stories and characters, but then I must hole up, sometimes even withdraw, to this inner cave or I will have nothing at all to write, and no energy with which to write it.

Yet many writers are professed introverts through and through–they prefer the silence and solace of their own company How about you? Does socializing add to, or take away from your writing? Can you be easily defined as an introvert or extrovert, are are you a shade of gray?


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