My answer? Not true!
First of all, from what I learned, there are very, very few true introverts or extroverts in this world. Most are a mix of both. Yes, we people tend to one side, but in general, we are a quite healthy mix of both.
Also, don’t forget, introverts aren’t eremites. It’s not like these people tend to hide in a cave, locking out everyone and everybody who approaches them. It just means, they usually prefer smaller gatherings before loud parties with dozens or hundreds of people. It doesn’t mean, they never go to a party, it only means, after a while, they will politely say good night or prefer a so-called ‘French farewell’, where they disappear and contact the host the next day to let them know, all is good, and they ‘didn’t feel so well’, but it was a wonderful party and thank you for the invitation! Nobody who knows introverts is going to be angry about that… it happens on a regular basis with them.
Now, who did set the rumor up, writers had to be introverted, because they bury themselves in work, all alone and brooding, separated from society, until they dive up, reborn from the ashes of the paper of their stories, flying high, soaring for a moment, enjoying the immense honor and love their fans shower them with, until the next idea forces them to once more disappear in the undefined cave of their narrow broom shed, where they write, during the night… whiskey and tequila next to them, while sleeping off their hangover for days at the time… (
Oh, I love that image… I’m actually trying to picture myself doing that, but I get interrupted by the loud laughing fits I keep having.)
Now, let’s face a little reality here. Writers do their work the best they can. There are as many work processes as there are writers, probably even a few more. Most writers are not drunk while working; Hemingway’s drunk depression might sound like an ideal example of a world-weary genius, but most of us writers prefer to be able to write a coherent sentence that actually makes sense. We prefer to do our work with a minimal chance of typos or grammatical errors. We don’t ‘bury’ ourselves, we just prefer to work in peace and silence without too many interruptions that kill the buzz or interrupt the flow. Most of us set a goal, like 7 – 8 hours a day. (Sometimes only six, to each his/her own)… after that, we have a meal, shower, go to bed and work again the next day. Yes, our story is told in our head, we work alone, but also, the writing is only the smallest part of our work. Marketing, social media presence, public speaking, author visits, book clubs, teaching…? We are busy with many other things, too, that is part of what we do! And most of that part, demands meeting with people, networking, being chatty, open, friendly, and everything else nobody would expect an introvert to master.
There are plenty of articles around, describing introverts and extroverts, none of them describes being one of them as suffering from a personality disorder. It’s just a personality trait. Habits, preference, whatever we want to describe it. Introverts are not sick, they just feel good with their work, the peace and quiet, and the characters in their latest book.
I read a great article about introverts and extroverts on introvertdear.com. They also offer a quiz that goes with the article. Answer 21 questions, and you know if you tend to be more of an intro- or an extrovert.
What do you think, I turned out to be? Oh yes… no surprise there…
What is your experience with either personality? What do you think you are, and were you surprised finding out more about it? Let us know in the comments.