Here's the thing! I used to teach Psychology to Sixth Form girls before I retired. (I know, you're thinking 'lucky dog', but being in a room full of chattering females was one of those levels in hell that Dante Alighieri wrote about in the Divine Comedy). Anyway, stop trying to distract me! Before becoming a civilian teacher I did a lot of teaching in the Army related to psychology - like leadership, methods of instruction, physical training, and drill (the picture is of me taking part in a parade as a Drill Sergeant in about 1985/86 - Note the lithe body!). Anyway, I began thinking about the personality types of writers! Well, you do when it's a slow day, don't you?
I conducted a quick search using the nice Mr Yahoo's engine again and found a four-fold classification by the famous writing coach Jill Dearman who lives in New York city (which is a little place outside London if I'm not too much mistaken)! There's lots of questionnaires that try to analyse you - learning styles, thinking styles, urgency index, mindset, team profile, but I particularly like this personality inventory: NEO-PI (Short). I used to get all my students to complete it and then analysed their conscientiousness score - pretty accurate in terms of identifying those who were motivated to succeed! Try completing the inventory when you're looking for something to do other than write.
So, the beautiful and captivating Ms Dearman reckons there are four types of writers: 1) The Distractionist - A quick-thinking person who is never at a loss for great ideas, but somehow loses interest by the second draft; 2) The Dictator - Knows how to keep her eye on the prize and her butt in the chair, but her unwillingness to change makes her inflexible, stiff and often frustrated. As the needs of readers and the marketplace evolve she refuses to; 3) The Perfectionist - Grabs the reader at the first sentence, yet she cannot move on to the next brilliant line because she is still agonizing over the punctuation in the first; and 4) The Commitment-phobe - Takes him a while to settle on one project, and when he does, he inexplicably becomes obsessed with 'the one that got away.' Which one describes you? If you were wondering, I'm a Distractionist - I hop from project to project like a damned grasshopper!
Are you a Type A or B personality? Here's a survey to find out: Survey! So you can compare, I did it and I'm a Type A+ personality - that's why I had a heart attack two years ago. Here's what it said: You're driven to succeed every single second of the day, and you don't let up on your goals no matter how tired you are. You've already achieved a lot in your life... but it's not enough for you. Always on the go, you tend to get things done quickly and effectively. You have the personality to be a successful entrepreneur. Just remember to play a little too, even if play is the most difficult thing for you! True... so true! It's not the first time I've done the questionnaire - and it always comes out the damned same.
Here's another Survey: What Type of Writer Should You Be? I completed it and apparently I should be a Film Writer: You don't just create compelling stories, you see them as clearly as a movie in your mind. You have a knack for details and dialogue. You can really make a character come to life. Chances are, you enjoy creating all types of stories. The joy is in the storytelling. And nothing would please you more than millions of people seeing your story on the big screen! Now, call me a donkey's hee-haw, but this is damned accurate! What about you? What type of writer should you be?
Maybe my next project should be a movie script! Exit stage left... Now, that's spooky, because I was only reading an article on Scriptwriting in one of my Writing Magazines today and thinking, Maybe I'll have a go at that! Is someone trying to tell me something? Are the planets in conjunction? Ha! Asking all these questions reminded me of Bill Cosby's 'Why is there air?'. Now that guy was funny. I was stationed in Germany in 1972 at the British Military Hospital in Iserlohn (when I was training to become a nurse) and the barman used to play one of Bill Cosby's comedy records. I loved Noah, My Dad's Car, Medic, Tonsils, $75 Car, oh all of them - they were brilliant. Here's a page full of Bill Cosby's videos on YouTube. If you want to laugh 'till you die - watch them! Below is Noah to give you an idea of what I mean.
In fact, now I come to think of it, Bill Cosby was probably one of my inspirations for humourous writing - he was the master. But, before I forget, let's talk about my next project - what, didn't I say it was going to be a big-budget Hollywood script with lots of whistles, bangs, and car chases that Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have already signed up for? - Well, it is! I have a working name for it - Mr & Mrs Jones! What do you think, hey, hey? So anyway, as soon as I learn how to write a script after doing some research in the BBC Writer's Room, Steven Spielberg will be emailing me toot sweet begging me to do a treatment (Ha! I love that - a treatment - what the hell is one of those?) Here's a definition from that very nice Wiki person - Treatment! Right, I'm going to go now, but stay tuned to the same Bat Channel (do you remember that TV series - Zapp! Kapow!) because I might just write something about book reviews next time!
Hi, I'm Tim Ellis - I write a lot and I hope you enjoy what I write.