I actually hate this – staring at a big white page, totally blank, ready for painted words and images and thoughts and feelings. It’s awkward.
So many years ago I stumbled upon the MBTI test. I landed on INFJ and I was like, “Cool, I’m like Gandhi,” and that was pretty awesome. Fast forward a couple of years and I take the test again.
Just about every year, for the last 20 years. INFJ, INFJ, INFJ. Always.
Now I’m no psychologist, I’m not from the Church of Jung (though I hear they have a lovely annual bake sale), I’m not an expert on MBTI – but as a student of myself I delve into as much information as I can about it. I’ve read hundreds upon hundreds of pages of information regarding the psychology of it all. What are my primary and tertiary functions? How do I react in certain situations? Why am I the way I am? How do I see the world?
Shadow functions. Shudder.
To me, it’s comforting to know that I have something to identify with that explains me perfectly. Basically, my life as an empathic, misunderstood weirdo, who’s intense, driven, and overwhelming to self.
I read a particular book about the subject (actually I’ve read like 30 as well as all kinds of papers on the psychology of it all, because INFJ) and when I put it down, it was with this sense of astonishment because it seemed like the author followed me around for my entire life, explained every bad decision, every good decision, exactly what I do when I’m stressed, when I’m happy, why I did the things I did. It was my owner’s manual, life story, and technical documentation wrapped into one tidy little package.
I know, I know, lots of people think MBTI is complete bullshit. But this was very different than your average Taurus Horoscope that’s all, “You are a person … who thinks. PLAY THIS LOTTERY NUMBER!”
This was page after page after page of exacting, resonating information. If Jungian Psychology is indeed seen as a Faith to some, then I have a great deal of Faith.
Then, to writing.
I’ve always been a writer. I’ve had numerous people over the course of my life tell me that communicating through written words is my thang, so to speak. I still hear it all the time, without any prompting.
I’ve always written stories. Short ones, long ones, mostly unfinished ones, poetry, terrible haiku, whatever I could manage to get out of my chaotic head. I have always WANTED to be a writer. I’ve always had ideas for stories that I’ve wanted to write.
I am writing this
a haiku for you right now
I’m not great at it
this has too many syllables
Now, I have enough age behind me to know how to handle all of my creative ups and downs (though, not with a great deal of GRACE, but I at least know what’s happening). So you are looking at some internet stranger’s re-invention of sorts. It’s time to write. It’s finally here. I’ve hit a level of maturity to go with it.
I have three goals:
- Finally write the book. Start to finish.
- Self-Publish it.
- Get one person to purchase it. Someone I don’t know (Sorry, Mom). Not a friend, colleague, acquaintance, etc. A stranger who says, “This might be worth the pittance he is asking.”
- Call myself an Author. Because I sold my book to one person.
There is no delusion of grandeur here. I’m not talking agents and book deals and publishing rights. I’m talking about completing something worth completing. Creating a story in my own head, constructing it with text, giving it shape and form, making it into something physical and tangible, and pouring hundreds and hundreds of hours into it for the sole perfect reason to say that I did it.
My secondary goal is to help you (it’s more of a “lovely side effect” than a goal to be perfectly honest). If you’re a writer and you’re struggling to find your way through that first project maybe seeing some of my trials and struggles and mistakes (oh, I will make so very many) will make your life a little easier and speaking from a strictly selfish point of view, that would make me feel pretty damn good.
So off we go, hope you stick with me.