Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Sticks and Stones with Patricia Johns

It takes a certain personality type to be a writer. I sit at home all day by myself, spinning stories and drinking pot after pot of tea. I only have the internet for company most days, which isn't very balanced. I'm forced to get out and interact with real live people on a semi-regular basis, and I have to warn you: not a lot of social contact  tends to breed a socially awkward woman.

I once spent a few weeks working on a deadline, and when I finally roused myself to go to the grocery store, I struck up a conversation with another woman at the egg case, which seemed entirely natural to me. I was starved for human contact. Who wouldn't want to discuss the chances of eggs being cracked in the carton? Then I caught the slightly panicked look on her face as she edged away. Oops. Sorry. I get like that when I've been cooped up for too long.

But then, like most socially awkward people, after chit-chatting with a friend or having a good visit with someone (an absolute necessity from time to time), I get this nervous feeling in my gut that I've said too much and sink back down into quiet solitude again. That's where novel writing comes in and soothes my soul. I can say as much as I like when I write a book, because it's fiction and a lot harder to nail down the vulnerable bits. ;) It's feels safer that way. People can buy their eggs un-accosted by lurking novelists.

It's okay to be different. My intense focus on things that interest me and mild social anxiety are actually an asset to my writing. The focus makes it possible for me to write entire novels in a matter of weeks. The social anxiety makes me more sensitive to the details in relationships around me. If I weren't as sensitive as a skinned grape in social circumstances, I doubt I'd notice half of it.

God put me together like this on purpose. I'm not a mistake. His hand didn't slip. I'm just... me. And you are put together the way you are for a reason, too. So be you with all the dignity and pride you can muster. And if you recognize yourself in me at all... maybe try writing book!


A Hero for Her Son

When the baby he rescued seven years ago returns—with his widowed adoptive mom—Deputy Fire Chief Matt Bailey can't turn them away. Desperate to escape the reminders of his failure in the line of duty, Matt is close to leaving town. But one look at Rachel Carter and her son, Christopher, has him second-guessing his plans. Rachel is a mom in need of a hero for her son. But as much as she wants the two to bond, she's determined to keep her distance from Matt. After losing her husband on the job, she promised never to love another fireman. Yet somehow she finds herself drawn to the one man she should avoid.

Check out my newest release, A FIREFIGHTER'S PROMISE. And come by my blog! I'd love to see you. 


  1. I hear you, Pat. And I love conference, but by the time I get home, I don't want to talk to anyone for at least 24 hours.
    When my kids were younger, I spent the night at the hotel after the conference ended just to decompress. That's why writing friends are so important.

  2. Very interesting post, Pat. Because I'm also a teacher, I am forced into more social interaction than I would generally choose. I'm perfectly happy to be home all summer.:)

    It's interesting how we are made. I don't mind interacting with students or parents at all - because it's structured probably. But put me in a room full of strangers and I'll make a beeline for the nearest exit.

  3. Like Cate, I'm a teacher, so social interaction is everyday :) I'm not happy in a room of strangers either.

  4. Leann, you sound like me! Conference is fun, and I love seeing everyone, but I need some down time to decompress afterward. I wonder what percentage of writers love or even crave solitude.

  5. It's nice to know I'm in such good company, ladies! :)


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