The writing life has one or two side effects I didn't expect. Most are very positive. I'm happy and creative. There is one negative side effect I'm not sure how to deal with effectively.
My husband works in the music industry. Now and then he asks me to go with him to an evening event. This has worked in my favor more than once. I've been able to see performers who've gone on to become huge acts while they were on their way up. And I got to meet my crush Ed Sheeran. And if you ever had some time, let me tell you about the time I made eye contact across the room with Justin Timberlake. Honestly, I'm still tingling.
It also means that I have to talk to people. Real people. Not fictional. It's a skill that I use less and less the more I write. And I seem to be getting more and more out of practice.
The other night we were waiting in the Green Room for a well-known rapper to come backstage and do what's called a 'meet and greet.' The door opened and his loquacious Brit manager walked in and bowed to me --- I curtsied and away we went. Or away I went. Turns out the guy had met the Queen. Elizabeth II on more than one occasion -- and so I didn't let him talk to anyone else in the room as I dazzled him with my obsession with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's upcoming nuptials. He was most kind. And I was a bit out of my mind. It's almost as if my words belonged to someone else.
When he walked away, I looked at the stranger next to me and said, "Please make me stop talking. I'm an introvert. I'm not used to socializing and I obviously don't understand how this works anymore."
Fortunately, I was standing next to other kindest man in the world. He laughed and said he understood. My cheeks were crimson with shame for the rest of the time we were in the green room. So that's nice.
I hope that my embarrassment will make me start working harder at putting words on the page. And stop talking. Just stop.