Monday, 2 January 2012

Misc Monday: 2012: The Yes Year

I don't think I'd be pushing the truth when I say that in general, we book bloggers are the quiet types. Speaking about myself specifically, I would go even further to say that I've got one foot in the hermit zone. I would much rather stay home and read/watch TV/stalk people on the internet, than go out and interact with real people. Sometimes, when it's a special occasion, I'll even feel a little resentful that something is taking me away from my life of quiet contemplation.
       I'm not 100% sure exactly how this happened either. It's not as if I was a social butterfly once upon a time, but I had a few close friends and a wider social group. Now they're lucky to see me on their birthdays. On top of this, I find myself judging people/situations well before I've even been asked to go somewhere. So far, I haven't been very fussed with the decline in my social life, but I've been beginning to think that it's hindering my writing.
        You see, the couple of times that I've come up with great story ideas, it's always been while I've been out with friends or at work. Very rarely do I have great inspiration sitting at home. This leads me to think that I could be missing out on situations that could resolve some much agonized over plot holes I've been trying to fill. Plus, I tend to think I'm closing a lot of doors on opportunities.
        For example, I have somehow developed a strange aversion to garage sales. I think it's another symptom of my OCD. So when I had no choice but to go to one whilst my younger sister and her husband were driving me home one day, I wasn't impressed. That is until I came across a stash of near mint YA books for the price of $1 each. I walked out of there with 10 books for $10! Then at a recent work Christmas party, which I did not want to go to because I just couldn't be bothered, I told a colleague I was writing a YA novel and she said that she actually knows a publisher!
       So the moral of the story is, as much as I would love to continue being a half hermit, I think it's better for me to get out there once in a while and embrace the real world and all it has to offer. So 2012 will be my official year of saying Yes to opportunities and invitations I would have tried to get out of earlier. Who knows, maybe I'll meet my potential agent on the train to the library one day :)


  1. Lan you and I are the exact same. I actually wrote a secion in my New Year Res. List subtitled: Hobbies and Social Life to tackle this problem. Its so painful just thinking about it.
    Here my list in case you interested.

  2. I am already almost regretting my resolution to be social but am sticking to it. It's good to know that there are others out there who are committing to similar goals.

  3. I am strange. Half the month I might want to spend my Friday night with friends, the other half I don't want to leave my house. I might act like it is a chore just to go outside. Usually this is when I am writing something out, or in such a good book I want everything to leave me alone so I can read.

    Beth ^_^

  4. Think I have one foot in the hermit zone too, as after work, I just want to go home and veg! Too tired to tango, but when I force myself, I usually wind up having fun! Here's to the Year of Yes! :)

  5. Beth: I'm heaps worse than you. When I'm writing. nothing else takes precedence. But my problem is that I'm not a hermit only when I'm writing. It's all the time :(

    Alexia: I know people who get home and dress up and then go out. I don't know how they do it. When I finish work all I want to do is stare at the TV. But you're right. When I do go out, I have heaps of fun.

  6. I don't even have to tell you that I'm the same way, but I think now with Ryan around it might change a bit. Although when I do go with him I'm still quiet at least I'm trying. It's weird to because when we're driving somewhere or anything I'm like lost in my own world thinking of stuff to write, or how can get the story going. It's funny he's always like "you look like your in deep thought."

  7. Ash you are exactly like me! I do my best novel thinking in the car so I whenever we go for a drive I will barely say a thing. We need to start getting in the mindset that going out is not evil...although I do miss you on here!

  8. I have certainly been guilty of this same thing more than once. I am going to try and be better about it this year too.

    Sign me up for your year of Yes!!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog :)

  9. I know. I've actually been good about going places (I went over his grandparents yesterday), but I feel like I'm letting my friends down that I talk to on here because I don't post much (or comment much) and I haven't read much. So I'm like how do I balance everything.

    Aww, I miss ya on here too.

  10. Michelle: Welcome to the Yes year! Already I am having second thoughts about things I've said yes to!

    Ash: Nah you're not letting anyone down. Having a life outside of the internet is healthy. We all could use a break. Welcome to the balancing act. I haven't figured it out either!

  11. I am just like you, Lan. My social skills definitely need some work. It's been impossible lately because everyone I try to do stuff with works when I'm off and I'm off when they work! *facepalm* I know that I definitely come up with some interesting writing ideas when I'm out and about with friends. I need to put more of an effort into getting out there myself.

    Too bad you live so far away, otherwise I'd come over. ;)

  12. Jessica: I was going to write something in my post about whether book bloggers would get along just as well in real life as they do online but I forgot! Not being social is fine when everyone you know if busy, but when they're not and you put it off, that's when you cross over into hermitville :)

  13. Well, this is a good resolution, Lan. I'm already a complete hermit, so I think it's too late for me. But, if you can still be saved, then you should do it!

  14. Cathy: At least you do hermit lifestyle the right way. With access to the internet and social media.

  15. "Sometimes, when it's a special occasion, I'll even feel a little resentful that something is taking me away from my life of quiet contemplation.

    Uhh... this sounds REALLY familiar... I LOVE my family, but I was all grumpy about having to go to a family Christmas dinner a couple of days back... because I'd just finished Shadow Kiss, and needed more Rose and Dimka.

    I honestly feel the same way as you've described... often... but I always end up enjoying myself when I DO get out, and I'd imagine being a writer, it's invaluable. GREAT resolution! Good luck! xx

  16. Looks like you raised a lot of interest with this post, Lan.

    I remember listening to an interview with John Irving on the car radio one day when I was driving into town in which he said that after all these years he still spends a lot of time by himself. He said, that's the thing about being a writer, you better like being alone.

    My experience, though, after returning to writing full time was that I ended up cocooning, losing contact with people for long stretches, and it wasn't the right thing to do. Since I had to get out there and market my book anyway, I made a virtue of necessity and joined a few writers' groups in Ottawa to meet new people and talk about writing, publishing, Twitter, whatever. It really helped. Balance is a good thing, Lan.

    The Overnight Bestseller

  17. Umm... you werent reading my mind were you?! You know I have the same aversion to activities in the outside world, lol. But yes, its so true. When i get out there and FORCE myself to interact, not only do I meet interesting people who have either been a great help with my writing etc, but I also get buckets of new ideas just by being out there. I too need to add this to my 2012 list

  18. Your thoughts seem so familiar...There's nothing I like better than being lost in a good book but I have to remind myself I can't spend my life between the pages. There are lots of good things out there besides books. All the great ideas for writing I've had when I was out, socializing, or just taking a walk.
    Good luck with your plans.

  19. Dangit, Lan, Why'd you have to go and write this post?! I don't want to reflect on this in my own life. ;)

  20. Sarah: I had my laptop out at Christmas and was blogging and writing! Looking back I feel bad about it but at the time I was just annoyed that people were distracting me!

    Michael: A great lesson. Writing is so very lonely. Sometimes I think I should find a writing buddy so I can just have someone to sit with while I type!

    Lani: LOL! Yeah you and I are cut from the same cloth. But when we do go out, I think we could socialise with the best of them even if it makes us grumpy.

    Delia: That is so true. There are so many other great things out there that I have forgotten about. Which is why it's time to stick my head out of this shell.

    Jenny: Sorry dude. Just ignore me! But if I ever come to America, I expect you to show up!

  21. Hahaha! I've already somehow acquired the nickname of "old lady" because I'm always turning down a chance of going out and doing something fun. (As if staring at my computer screen wasn't fun.)As everyone ushered in the New Year with champagne and partying, at 12 midnight I was sprawled on my bed with my laptop as my only focus. It was painful forcing myself to attend my Clubs' New Year outing the day after. So it seems as though I should force myself more. Lol.

  22. Lan, I must say again, you are the best!!! I think you just read my mind. My boyfriend and I just had this conversation yesterday. He's going out of town for work and I asked him if he knew any of the others that would be there and he said not yet, but he will soon. Ha! He's so outgoing and fun, and he know's I'm not. If it wasnt for the fact that he consistantly forces going out clothes into my hands and tells me to get ready to go, I'd be in all day. Then on the day's when I ignore the fact that he wants to go out, he invites people over. He just wont let me be a hermit when I'm at his house. He'll pick with me, or close my computer screen until i stop being shy and come out of my bubble to say hi to people. I admit, that because of him, I can talk to more random people and seem witty and funny in person instead of the nerd I am.

    I dont talk much in person (despite all I have to say online) and like you said, it's even worse in the car. I think my brain moves too fast for words and that if I said eveything, people would get a whole mishmash of information.

    I am the queen of "Ummm, we'll see. I think I have something to do that day" meanwhile, nothing is planned, or will be planned. My alternative answer is, "Yea I'll go, but just make sure you remind me because if you don't, I'll forrget and I wont be there." They forget to remind me, and I "forget" to go. In the unlikely even that i am reminded, I either force myself to go, or more likely say that there is some important thing that day that I forgot I had until recently that I promised to go to first. So sorry.

    Yea, I'm probably a horrible person, but I dont think non-hermits understand how much of a chore it is to go out and figure out things to say to people, meanwhile trying to make sure you dont sound like an idiot or a weirdo. My fear is that everything I say will be processed by the other person and that they're thinking "Who is this weird little short girl talking to me and what is she talking about. Does she know how much care nothing about what she's talking about. She should just walk away and curl into a ball in the corner and shut up because what she's saying is stupid." My boyfriend says that's not what people are thinking, and I reply, there's no way of knowing unless you are in everyone's head at the same time. Which you are not! ha!

    Yes I'm paranoid, with perhaps some overreaction but so what. There's no way they can laugh @ me if I say nothing.

    Okay, I'm done, although I have various other comments on the subject. I'll just let them rest for a few....

  23. phew! That was a long comment. Sorry about that!


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