The Satisfied Introvert: A Memoir About Finding Safety in an Extroverted World received a 4+ star review, making it an IndieReader Approved title.
Following find an interview with author Benjamin Plumb.
What is the name of the book and when was it published?
The Satisfied Introvert: A Memoir About Finding Safety in an Extroverted World. February 5, 2022.
What’s the book’s first line?
Preface: “When I was four years old, I ran away from home.”
Chapter 1: “To attract a girl in a suburban LA high school in 1960, a guy needed one of three things: a hulk of a body honed through years of athletic competition; a group of cool and good-looking friends, rich, if possible; or a hot car, preferably a 1932 Ford Little Deuce Coupe.” “…As for myself, I had flat feet and was in a remedial gym class.”
What’s the book about? Give us the “pitch”.
It is about my life as a case study in how not to be satisfied as an introvert. For almost sixty years I tried to live by a “winning formula” called “be methodical.” Performing step by step processes allowed me to get results by appearing more extroverted than I really was, which by the way is something almost all introverts start doing at around age four. We try to be diplomatic, or relentless, or funny, or reliable, or any of the thousands of other ways in which quiet people cope with our extroverted world. Only when I lost a marriage, went bankrupt, and got let go from two jobs in a row did I realize that the recipe had become a ruinous way to live. I finally distanced myself from it, gave up trying to use my Harvard MBA to be an executive or an entrepreneur, and started living openly, gloriously, as the introvert that I am. What followed were years of unbelievable satisfaction and good financial success as a business writer.
What inspired you to write the book? A particular person? An event?
I kept a journal on and off for thirty-eight years, and when I retired in 2019, I at first just wanted to use it to tell my story to family and friends. But the more I wrote, the more I realized that the tale might encourage other quiet people let go of trying to be more outgoing than they actually were. Through vivid examples, I now wanted to help others see that the only way to become a satisfied introvert is to become an authentic, unapologetic one.
What’s the main reason someone should really read this book?
For quiet people, it calls them to take responsibility for how they were born. Introversion is a hard-wired neurological condition based on extreme sensitivity to the neurotransmitter dopamine. Being around too many people or too much noise easily can easily overload us with dopamine, driving us to seek the solace of alone time. The book shows how anyone can stop trying to be someone they are not, and successfully lean into their quiet strengths.
For people who are more outgoing, the book provides a graphic picture of what the introverts they know and love are going through. It helps extroverts to understand our behavior and allow us to be.
When did you first decide to become an author?
At age 76, when I retired.
Is this the first book you’ve written?
How much time do you generally spend on your writing?
Once I was retired, I spent all day every day writing until the manuscript was finished. Now I spend about half of the time writing, and half doing marketing and promotion.
What’s the best and the hardest part of being an indie?
The best part is the freedom to capture most of the royalties, and – for an introvert – to be able to reach out to others at my own pace when doing marketing. The worst part is having to do promotion at all. But with a traditional publisher it would be even worse (because somebody would be watching over my shoulder).
What’s a great piece of advice that you can share with fellow indie authors?
Keep a journal. It brings a double benefit – daily practice in writing, and the generation of a ton of unique content that you can use in writing future stories and books.
Would you go traditional if a publisher came calling? If so, why?
Probably not. I enjoy my freedom too much. If a film company came calling, however, I’d be interested.
Is there something in particular that motivates you (fame? fortune?)
I’m not in it for money or fame. I’m in it to help other introverts dump their winning recipes, embrace who they are, and find joy in doing so.
Which writer, living or dead, do you most admire?
Susan Cain. Her book, Quiet, is what allowed me to see for the first time, at age 70, that as an introvert there was absolutely nothing wrong with me. In fact, she helped me to see that my introversion was my greatest skill: the ability to work slowly, have deep concentration, listen more than talk, and communicate better in writing than in speaking.
Which book do you wish you could have written?
Well, Susan Cain’s Quiet. It is probably the most fundamentally life-altering book an introvert could read.