So I’ve been reading Quiet by Susan Cain. The subtitle is The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, which gives you a pretty good idea of the subject matter. The stereotypical writer is an introvert, though the extrovert writer certainly has some advantages, particularly when it comes to marketing — think about readings, speaking engagements, teaching, and so on. It seems that Auctor extrovertus would also do well in journalism, which requires a lot of interaction with people.
Cain would argue, however, that introverts have the edge when it comes to observation, awareness, attention to detail, and empathy — all of which are important skills for a writer. She also talks about how the tendency toward introversion/extroversion is apparent in children as young as four months, which is amazing.
Quiet also discusses the work environment preferred by introverts (quiet solitude) and how in most workplaces, the current trend toward open, shared offices makes this challenging. I’m lucky to have my own office with a door at my day job, but sometimes finding alone time to write at home can be difficult. I’ve had occasional luck in a café or the library, but I have to say my favorite spot to write is at home — with no possibility of interruption.
Now I just have to learn to stop interrupting myself. I’m talking to you, Internet.