I am an introvert, as many writers tend to be (not all, it's true), though I'm pretty good at putting on the public face and socializing. I'm not shy, I don't get tongue-tied (much), and I can meet and greet like a professional. Not sure where I acquired these abilities, though I think it comes from being married to an extrovert and watching him in action. It's also a function of age — realizing that it doesn't matter what someone thinks, I'm me and that's that. 🙂
But, I always DREAD the start of these socializing events. Today is the start of a busy two days for me. The Heart of Dixie Readers' Luncheon is tomorrow. Today, there are preparations to make — bags to be stuffed, dinners to attend, and a party for a friend who sold to Mills & Boon a couple of weeks ago.
And yet, I always always dread it, even when I want to see everyone and have fun. (I feel this way about conference too, even when this year I have a lot to look forward to.) I hate the preparation — the thinking, planning, packing (it's one overnight in a hotel 15 miles from home and yet I stress), the schlepping, getting situated, etc. I know I'll have fun when it starts, but it's the getting to the start I hate.
Some people are naturals at this kind of thing. I am not. At conference last year in Dallas, I got so overwhelmed at one point I went back to the room and was grateful my wonderful roomies were still out. I sat, drinking wine by myself (uh-oh, look out Hemingway), and tapped out the beginning of a new story on my AlphaSmart. I seriously needed that decompression time. If I could afford it, I'd spend the entire conference in a room to myself. But at $225 a night, that ain't happening. 🙂
OTOH, like I say, once I get there this afternoon and start chatting and celebrating and talking writing with people who GET IT because they are writers too, I'll be as happy as a pig in mud. If I could just figure out how to stop the stressing stuff beforehand, I'd be all set.
Are you an introvert or an extrovert? Have trouble with socializing? Any tricks you use to prepare yourself? I don't have any, but like I say, once I get started, I'm fine. It's the getting there and getting into that frame of mind — and for longer events, like Nationals, some alone time.
Introvert: guilty as charged.
Since I know that I don’t enjoy meeting new people, I start out with the people I know. Then meet their friends. Then I become the pig.
But if there are too many people. I am outa there. 🙂 Cyn
PS: the pig is one of those people gathered around the buffets, discussing salads and other delights. LOL
Ah, see, I’m an extrovert. Yeah, I do get tired of talking to people eventually, but unlike an introvert, I don’t find it draining. And Nationals can send even the most extroverted over the edge–how the introverts don’t implode, I’ll never know.
But I am looking forward to SF this year!!!!
Prepping, packing and schlepping sucks–no matter what kind of vert you are.
I’m right there with you! If it wasn’t for the fact that I’m afraid I’ll miss something, I would also room on my own. I have been known to escape to the room when I know everyone is gone, just to get the down time.
This is very common for an introvert. If you allow yourself that time without feeling guilty, then things will go a lot better. A step up would be plan them ahead of time. Set aside a time each day at Nationals for you to have “me” time, no talking, or listening. Just relaxing. Five or ten minute even will go a long way to easing out the tension that being around a group of people for long periods of time.
You always did a good job socializing in our small circle in Germany, Cyn. But, we were the liberal arts people — we all understood each other! I sometimes think back on our Bookmark coffee days. It seems so long ago now. :/
PC, I’m thinking SF is going to be a blast!! But, I’m going to dread the start — the packing and getting there. You and your list, from TWO WEEKS AGO, gave me a jolt. I can’t plan that far ahead. I’m already unprepared in comparison. 🙂
Angel, so true! If I wasn’t rooming with people, I’d miss the fun. And I had serious fun this weekend, just like I knew I would.
It would be too easy if I had a room alone to go hide in it. So it’s good to have roomies. But you have a great idea about planning that down time! I know I will need it.
I miss those days too. I have a friend that I meet for lunch every one to two months… but that is it. Makes me sad.
You need to join a writers group, Cyn! I wish RWA had a chapter there for you. It’s a great group, believe me. The only NV chapter is in Vegas though. Doesn’t mean one won’t start where you are. They need a certain number of people and someone committed enough to follow through with the setting up, etc. I’ll keep my eye out. If I hear of one, I’ll let you know. 🙂