Image: INFJ Writers

July 23, 2015

One of the coolest things about blogging is the search for images. That feeling you get when you pair your latest outpouring with the perfect meme? Or find a quote that totally drives home the point you were trying to make? Yeah, that’s hard to beat.

 

And sometimes, as I’m rifling through the treasure trove of images that Bing or Google has to offer, I’ll stumble across a keeper. Like this one:

 

 

 

 

I haven’t really given much thought to the nature of my writing process. As with most of the things I do by instinct, I accept it for what it is and don’t question it. But the image above made me stop and wonder . . . exactly how much does being an INFJ impact the way I write?

 

Time for a little analysis.

 

 

 

 

Okay, this part’s accurate. My senses are easily overwhelmed, so working in high-traffic areas with people and noise cuts down on productivity. Solitude (and lots of it) is best.

 

 

 

 

When I read this, I had to smile. Detailed outlines are like kryptonite. They strangle my creativity. It might amuse—or horrify—readers to learn that I made Gambit up as I went along. That's right. No planning whatsoever, and it was absolutely breathtaking.

 

It’s also why writing the sequel is proving to be a difficult task. I’ve written myself into a detailed world with rules and laws of physics that can’t be broken, as well as characters that need direction. So I’ve had to spend some major time organizing my ideas for the rest of the series. And I did put some of them on paper.

 

 

 

 

I’d say these are true some of the time. When I’m deep in my thoughts, symbolism reigns and the mechanical stuff goes out the window. I do have to work hard to keep my writing from being too formal. That takes effort. Perfectionism is pretty much a double-edged sword . . . it can be crippling when I’m stressed and exhilarating when I’m on a roll.

 

Can you really spend too much time searching for the right word? Hmm.

 

 

 

 

There probably is such a thing as too much revising. But I always stop when I reach a certain level of satisfaction. When I can read a section over and over without the desire to change anything, I’m good.

 

 

 

 

Define “sensitive.” I’m pretty good at taking criticism if I understand where it’s coming from. I have a strong sense of what’s right for me, and as long as I’m happy with what I’ve created, other people’s judgments don’t hamper my ability to keep writing. Honestly, it’s my own self-criticism that blocks me. My worst critic is, and will always be, ME.

 

I don’t usually ask others to read my works-in-progress. Part of this is because I’m so lost inside the world I’m creating that someone else’s interpretation and suggestions would be more confusing than helpful. But I’m okay with handing over a finished (or even semi-finished) product to a beta reader for feedback, and I’m fine with the editing process. It just means more to me to achieve that personal, above-mentioned level of satisfaction than it does to have another person’s approval.

 

Talking about my work? It’s okay . . . to a certain point. But I always keep the true essence of my ideas to myself. Why? Because unveiling them strips away the mystery. Writing is like magic, and what good is magic if people can see it coming?

 

 

 

 

So, am I a typical INFJ writer? In some ways. But mostly, I’m just me. I wave my wild tail and walk my wild lone.

 

And try to collect really cool images along the way. :)

 

 

Photo credit: INFJ Writers image via Pinterest; Merlin image by artbykt via Deviant Art

 

 

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C.L. Denault is the author of Gambit, a thrilling YA dystopian novel released March 2015 by REUTS Publications.

 

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