Let’s just be honest, here. I’m having a lot of trouble composing this week’s article—on how my personality affects my writing—because I’m not honestly sure what my personality is. I mean, I’m a little serious, I’m an extrovert, and a bit of a workaholic, but “I write a lot” does not a Deb article make.
I took a bunch of Buzzfeed personality quizzes.
“This Sorting Quiz Will Tell You Which Hogwarts House You Truly Belong In” told me I was 31% Slytherin, followed by 25% Ravenclaw. I tend to love writing characters that are always searching for something—and who are not always truthful with the people in their lives about it. Ash Jackson, the main character of Architects of Memory, is very much like this—at least in the beginning. So far, Buzzfeed? Nailed it.
In “Prepare An Outfit And We’ll Tell You What Kind Of People You Hate,” Buzzfeed informed me that “I hate everyone a little bit, like Wednesday Addams.” Now, personally, I’d rather not hate people at all, thank you very much. But every character I write does have a little bit of a villain in them–but that’s because every human does, and that little bit of darkness mixed with light is what makes for an interesting story in my book.
In “Order A Cafeteria Lunch And We’ll Tell You Which High School Clique You Belong In,” I am told that I should hang with the goths. Which would have been true, had my high school contained actual goths instead of a bunch of cliques that were goth-adjacent (and I was a member of three to five of them). Nevertheless, in my books, I’m much more “George R. R. Martin” than “80’s reset button” when it comes to death. Death haunts us all. It’s only fair that it haunt characters in fiction, too. Spooky.
In “You’re Either A Disney Princess or a Marvel Hero—BUT WHICH ONE?” the drama of it all decided I was… Belle. Okay, I like books, this one’s obvious, moving on…
In “This Phone Quiz Will Reveal Your Personality Type,” Buzzfeed says “Ultra Type A,” and that I am “organized and goal-oriented” and also “a bit intense and aggressive.” I’m goal-oriented when writing, but organized? Pffft. And while I like to think that I’m not aggressive, I can definitely be intense. As can my fiction. One reviewer once called a short story of mine “unpleasant to read.” Well, yes. The story has a church bombing in it and a lot of people die. If you’re not a little uncomfortable while reading it, I’m scared for you.
And, finally… in “There Are Only Six Types of People In The World And You’re One Of Them,” Buzzfeed said that I’m “The Pathfinder,” and that I tend to learn by doing, that I jump straight into the swimming pool, and that I’m not an “overly cautious person,” all of which is true. In my best form, I’m an elephant in a china shop on the best of days, and that generally comes through in my writing. I don’t think Architects is a very safe book. The short story that was just nominated for a Nebula Award* is very much the same—full of my own unadulterated weird. Both times, I thought: is this too much? Is this too me? Is this too far? Both times, I pressed go—and both times, I was glad for it.
Thanks for coming with me on this funny little personality journey, and if you’d like to try the quizzes yourself, just click here.
* The story is “The Dead, In Their Uncontrollable Power,” and it can be read by clicking on the link.
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