Great On Paper, Awful In Person

22 Jun

Writers. Some go above and beyond and some fall flat on their literary faces. Some writers have the luck of being very talented and professional writers, as well as very talented and professional people. Their writing is impeccable, smart, funny, entertaining–anything but flat and boring–and they have the personality to match. Their charisma is contagious and infectious, you just want to be around them, constantly, and hope they will some day include you in one of their blog posts, novels or screenplays.

But, this is the real world, and unfortunately not all writers can be as great in person as they are on paper. As a matter of fact, some people are writers because their personalities suck, they’re socially awkward, and can only express themselves through the written, or typed, word. I happen to know a few people like this, and it happens to be quite comical…and downright annoying. I’m not saying that I’m perfect on page and in person, but I happen to be just as fun in person as I am on paper. “But Ditk, you can’t judge how you are in person because you ARE you! Of course you’re going to say you have a great personality and can write very well!” (this wasn’t an actual quote, this was just me reading your mind…scary, I know) The truth is I can’t read my personality, but I can read my writing, and so can all of my family and peers. The people who have read my writing have told me on countless occasions that I write the way I speak, meaning when they are reading something that I have written, they can picture me speaking those exact words and can actually hear me reading the paper in their head. This is clear cut evidence that my personality matches my writing skills. My opinion, reviews and stories that I write are ones that I often share verbally in person, and when I write, I basically just have a conversation in my head and then transcribe it onto the page in front of me. Those who excell on paper and fail in person have a technical error somewhere that allows them to express themselves well on the path from brain to page, but not brain to mouth.

Basically, if you’re confused, all I am saying is that if you’re a great writer, you might want to work on your personal skills as well. Why do I suggest this? Well, let’s say your latest novel gets published and they want you to do a 25 city book tour/signing. Your book could be the next Harry Potter, but if you can’t engage in normal conversation, people are going to get turned off when they meet you, and then they will tell their mother who will tell your aunt who will tell your cousin who will tell her boss who will tell his wife that you suck, and thus creates a vicious cycle of negative feedback that could eventually lead to a decrease in sales and a one way ticket to being sold exclusively at Home Goods.

Final word: Exercise the same amount of personality and spunk in person that you do in your writing. Not only will you have a greater chance at becoming successful, but you’ll make more friends and sound a lot smarter too.

I’m actually probably really awkward…oops.

Ditk

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One Response to “Great On Paper, Awful In Person”

  1. Dad June 24, 2010 at 6:01 am #

    You REALLY tell stories in PERSON???
    wow. I didn’t know that!

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