Today I am so pleased to welcome Meghan Maslow to Joyfully Jay. Meghan has come as part of the GRL Blog Tour to talk to us about being an extrovert at GRL, as well as her latest release, By Fairy Means or Foul. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!
An Extrovert’s Take on GRL
Hello, Everyone! I’m Meghan Maslow and I’m guest posting today as part of the GayRomLit blog tour. GRL is my favorite conference. To me, it means seeing old friends, making new ones, and lots and lots of book talk. If you’ve never been, you’re really missing out, and if you have been, you know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s amazing. It’s fun. It’s. . . exhausting.
Yeah, I said it. And as an extrovert, that’s really saying something.
As you can probably guess, most authors—and many readers—are introverts. I always enjoy the posts that pop up each year on how to navigate a conference if you’re an introvert. I’ve yet to see one for extroverts, though there have been some articles with sage general advice—especially, you don’t have to attend absolutely every single event. (This one I need to memorize).
Now, I’m not going to pretend that extroverts have it harder at conferences. We don’t. At. All. In fact, conferences—at least for this extrovert—really energize me in a way that nothing else does. Being around likeminded people, meeting favorite and new-to-me authors, cutting loose on the dance floor. What’s not to like?
But being an extrovert is exhausting in a completely different way than for an introvert. For introverts, as I understand it, too much social interaction can feel overwhelming. It’s an energy drain instead of an energy booster. I (theoretically) get this. It makes sense that an introvert might need to retreat to a quiet space to recharge, and then reengage.
I think introverts often assume that being an extrovert must be soooo nice and soooo easy in these circumstances. . . and in a way they’re right. I don’t have a shy bone in my body, and human interaction only gives me more energy, not less. So I get it. I’m lucky. I know this.
But that doesn’t mean it isn’t exhausting. Here’s why: Every interaction I have gives me some sort of energy boost. Let’s say it’s similar to drinking a strong cup of coffee. I meet a friend in the hallway (energy boost), I chat up people at the bar (energy boost), I go to a panel (another energy boost). Pretty soon, I have so much energy that I’m buzzing with it, my heart racing, much the way too much caffeine can do. My enthusiasm and excitement run high and I’m not kidding when I say that I don’t sleep more than a couple hours a night. I can’t. I’m over-energized to the nth degree. If you look closely (especially as the conference goes on), you can notice my hands shaking, just like I’ve had too much caffeine. Because essentially I have.
And I can’t turn it off. Social interaction thrills me. If I’m headed to bed and someone calls out and asks me to join something, I can’t seem to say no. When I go to the late night dances, I can’t seem to leave until it closes down. Cards at 3am? Sure. Staying to last call at the bar? Of course. All that energy is addictive, you see.
The good news is that I live each moment at GRL to the fullest, meet as many people as possible, and try my best to be open and friendly to those I know might be a little shy or just need to see a friendly face in the crowd. It’s going to be even more intense this year because I’ve registered to be a supporting author; my first time. I’ll be lucky if I don’t lose my voice! And of course, I encourage anyone who wants to gab to come meet me in the author’s lounge. Don’t worry if you’re shy—I can talk enough for the both of us if need be.
So, what’s bad about over-energizing, you might ask? Well, at the time, not a whole heck of a lot. It’s after I return home and crash. Then I crawl into bed and sleep for two days and can barely adult during that time. It takes those days to drain away the excess energy I’ve accumulated and return me to my normal balanced state. It’s full blown withdrawal: Headaches, upset stomach, and grumpy as f&%k. Just as though I were giving up caffeine (which I’d never do, by the way—that’s just crazy talk).
And yet I wouldn’t trade going to GRL for the world. Because at the time, it feels fantastic. The best high in the world. And it’s all natural, no substances needed other than basic human interaction. So, even though I collapse into a heap and am useless for a few days afterward, I wouldn’t want it to be any other way.
Look out GRL, here I come. . .
The last thing half-dragon, half-fairy private investigator Twig Starfig wants to do is retrieve a stolen enchanted horn from a treacherous fae, but there’s no denying the dazzlingly gorgeous unicorn who asks Twig to do just that. Literally, no denying, because compelling the reluctant detective is all part of a unicorn’s seductive magic.
To add to his woes, Twig is saddled with the unicorn’s cheeky indentured servant, Quinn Broomsparkle. Dragons are supposed to want to eat humans, but Twig’s half-dragon side only wants to gobble up Quinn in a more . . . personal way. Making matters worse, it’s obvious the smokin’ hot but untrustworthy sidekick is hiding something. Something big. And not what’s in his trousers. In the PI business, that means trouble with a capital Q.
Throw in gads of zombies, a creepy ghost pirate ship, a malfunctioning magic carpet, and Twig’s overbearing fairy father’s demands to live up to the illustrious Starfig name. Naturally, an old but abiding enemy chooses this time to resurface, too. Those inconveniences Twig can handle. The realization he’s falling for a human who isn’t free to return his affections and whose life may hang on the success of his latest case?
Not so much.
Her initials say it all. . .
Meghan Maslow is truly a rare breed. No, not a unicorn (although that would be sooo cool). She’s a. . . gasp!. . . extroverted writer. It may seem counterintuitive that as someone who is energized by people, she spends most of her time alone. Yet, that’s the case. And she doesn’t mind.
If she gets writers block or starts to go a little stir crazy, she heads to a coffee shop, a restaurant, a friend’s place—anywhere to fill up her need for human contact. It also helps that she spends a lot of time with the voices in her head. Some of them are really quite opinionated.
She loves writing gay romance because she’s a sap for a happy ending, and she believes everyone—regardless of orientation—should be able to find books that have them.
She believes life is for living, kindness is contagious, and a good book makes the world a better place. She loves travel, reading, world music, Moscow Mules, awkward dancing, dreadlocks, her family, and um. . . writing.
GayRomLit is an annual retreat that brings together the people who create and celebrate LGBT romance for a one-of-a-kind, must-attend gathering of dynamic, informal, and diverse fun.
Each year, the retreat rotates to a new city and hosts tons of events from raucous parties to mellow tête á têtes while still maintaining a spirit of familiarity. GRL is the place to connect with old friends, find family you didn’t know you had, and meet with both newly published and established authors in the gay romance genre.
This year’s retreat will be held in Denver, Colorado on October 19-22, 2017 at the Denver Marriott Tech Center.
For more information or to register, please visit our website: http://gayromlit.com/
Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Meghan; I hope that you have a wonderful time at GRL. It sounds like a great place for extrovert and introvert alike.
I’m sad you’re not a unicorn, but at least you write about them. Have fun at GRL.
Sounds like such a fun read. Thanks for the post and have fun at GRL =)