Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Introvert or Extrovert? by Julie Jarnagin

I've been reading Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain, and it has me thinking a lot about personality types-my own, those of the people around me, readers, and the characters in my books.

Here are a couple of simple definitions of the terms:
Introverts - Tend to be drained of energy by large crowds. They enjoy more time alone or one on one.
Extroverts - Tend to be more outgoing and are energized by socializing.

Have you ever taken the Myers Briggs Personality Test? Here's a link to a quick and free version of the test. I'm an INTJ. I'm an introvert and a thinker. My husband is definitely an extrovert. I think our personalities balance each other. I have a larger social circle because of him (we joke that he makes most of my friends for me), and I encourage him to take time to slow down.

The more I learn about personality types, the more insight it gives me into the characters in the stories I write.

I've written about all kinds of characters, but I have to say the introverted heros (think Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice) have been some of the most challenging but also the most rewarding to write. They hold back when expressing their emotions, which can be tricky, but it also means there's great potential for the build up of the romantic tension that can lead to a truly magical ending. My hero in The Wedding Barn is an introvert.

Extroverts, on the other hand, can be a lot of fun to write because they often have a quick comeback, which makes for a lot of entertaining dialogue between the couple. My hero in Kiss the Cowboy is an extrovert with a flair for entertaining a crowd. Think Ferris Bueller. :)

So how about you? Are you an extrovert or an introvert? Are your favorite characters usually the same?

Coming Soon:

Cowgirl in the Kitchen

Just as she's about to make her dream come true, disaster strikes. The only way she can get back in the saddle is to strike a bargain—with a man her family despises. 

Jentry Lawson's dream of becoming a world-class barrel racer is about to happen—until she and her horse are injured in a terrible accident. Forced to move back home to Texas to recuperate, her Dallas-based brother makes her an offer she can't refuse. He needs someone he can trust to oversee the renovation and grand opening of his new restaurant. If she'll take that on, he'll finance her return to the arena. It doesn't take Jentry long to discover she bit off more than she can chew. Swallowing her pride, she asks for help from Gavin Easton—a man her brother despises. But he's the one person who can make the restaurant succeed. 

People in Glover never thought Gavin Easton would amount to anything. Ever since his own restaurant in town burned down, he's taken odd jobs to provide for his niece, whom he is raising alone. When beautiful and stubborn Jentry offers him the perfect job, his first reaction is to turn her down flat. No way he's going to do anything to help her brother! But there's more at stake than his pride. Can he trust his future to the woman whose brother tried to ruin his reputation—and his life? 

Besides, how can he manage a restaurant, when he can't manage his heart?

USA Today Best Selling author Julie Jarnagin writes sweet and inspirational romance. She grew up in a small Oklahoma town where her family farmed and ranched. These days she lives in a not-so-big city with her amazing husband and two young sons who tolerate all her nerdy quirks. Julie earned a B.A. in Journalism / Professional Writing from the University of Oklahoma and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. www.JulieJarnagin.comSign up for her newsletter to be the first to learn about new releases and free books:

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  1. Julie, my husband was an extrovert (oh my goodness, was he ever!!) and I am an introvert. Some people automatically think of introverts as "shy," which as you know is not the same thing. My current favorite book on this topic is THE INTROVERT ADVANTAGE: HOW QUIET PEOPLE CAN THRIVE IN AN EXTROVERT WORLD.

    As to favorite personality types for characters, I think I just appreciate a nice mixture. :)

  2. I'm definitely an introvert, but energized by a great group of friends. Very interesting blog!

  3. I really enjoyed taking the quiz. It says I'm 49 percent introverted and 51 percent extraverted. It makes sense. That describes my personality perfectly, not too much of either one.

  4. Interesting post. Thanks for the link to the personality test. I like to pretend I'm a character and take the test to see how it comes out.