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Introverts, INFJs, and INFPs

“Stop Calling Me Weird.” Why Highly Creative People Struggle with Their Own Gifts

Mermaid CarA few years ago I found out about synesthesia and yet another piece of the strange way I viewed the world started to make sense. The short explanation is that it’s a neurological phenomenon that causes the senses to get mixed up in some way. So, someone who has it might smell lemons when they hear a particular piece of music. Or see numbers or letters as each having their own color. For me personally, I had always felt like each letter of the alphabet (and numbers too) had a specific gender. I knew that it wasn’t something I had invented with my imagination. It was just the way things were for me. Continue Reading

Calling Bullshit on the Myth that Every Writer Needs to Grow a Thick Skin

Cave WarriorFor a long time in my life I did not admit I was a writer. It was something I was privately proud of, but I also felt it was unsafe to tell this to other people. Probably because I knew that immediate questions would follow. Oh really? What have you written? Can I read it?

It wasn’t that I was ashamed of what I had written, or that I was suffering from self-doubt (although there was some of that, too). It was that I knew it was common procedure for a writer to give her work to others and get their “valuable feedback” on it. It was widely understood that I should be seeking this valuable feedback wherever I could and using it to improve my writing. It had been drilled into me that I should read and listen to the most fierce criticism without flinching. That this would make me stronger. That all “real” writers did this and were better for it.

And that was how I knew something must be wrong with me. Continue Reading

Dark Forest: Deception as Part of the Writer’s Personality

A few years ago I was sitting at a café with a friend when another guy walked up and started talking to us. My friend knew him and conversed with him for several minutes. When the guy walked away I asked, “Who was that?”

My friend’s reply: “Oh, just a writer.”

I sat there stunned for a second or two, not sure why I was feeling what I was feeling. Finally, I blurted out, “What do you mean just ? Why did you say it like that?” I was slightly hurt and a little bit angry and I had no idea why. My friend looked at me, confused. He considered my questions and then asked me, “What does ‘writer’ mean to you?” Continue Reading

INFJ Obsession: Archetype and the Psychic Bond

HeroIt started off innocently enough. I met him in a bookstore. He was the clerk, and I was buying the books. I talked with him for five minutes about Moby Dick and Melville’s poetry. There was something about him…he reminded me of a philosopher from ancient Greece. And yes, he said, he was interested in philosophy. He’d studied it for many years. Would I care to continue this conversation over coffee?

I wrote down his number and left the store. And everything still seemed to be innocent enough. Continue Reading