Friday, October 30, 2009

Internet Monk on Silence

Here's a post and a comment section I know you'll like. It's part of Internet Monk's reflections on an "Evangelical Liturgy."

The Evangelical Liturgy 20: Silence

My favorite line: "Many evangelicals have little idea how noisy their services are."


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Introverts Corner

Psychology Today has recently started a column called The Introverts Corner, which I'm really enjoying. There is a very helpful article discussing the distinction between introversion and shyness, that differentiates between motivation for socializing versus behaviors expressed in social situations. Introverts who are not shy may have low motivation for socializing but can be skilled in social situations when it's required. Those who are shy may have a high motivation for socializing (especially if they're extroverts) but their social skills and behaviors may be inhibited, marked by fear or anxiety.

Monday, October 26, 2009

New book, new blog

I thought the launch of Introverts in the Church ought to be commemorated by the launch of a newly formatted Introverted Church. Those of you who are subscribers ought to click over to see the new template. I'll probably be tweaking for a while, so let me know if you have any suggestions.

Friday, October 23, 2009

At long last

Introverts in the Church is in stock!!!!

Order it directly from InterVarsity Press and get it late next week.

Order it from Amazon and get it in 2-3 weeks.

Please spread the word!

Addition 10/27 - The book is taking a little while to process, so IVP probably won't ship it out until early November. Amazon will ship depending on where you live and when you pre-ordered. Forgive me, the publishing process is all so new to me!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Critical questions

So here's the all-important question of the weekend:

How does an introvert celebrate the release of his book?

1. Big blow-out party. Not so much.
2. Gathering of a few close friends.
3. On the floor in his room, rolled up into the fetal position
4. Drive to Alaska and live in an abandoned school bus. Later, die from eating poisonous berries.
5. Silent Reading party
6. Hold a sit-IN (get it?) at church on Sunday - during the passing of the peace/greeting time, have all the introverts remain in their seats, staring forward. Possibly sing "we shall overcome."
7. Gather a bunch of introverts to go to a public place, sit in one long row, and look at people. Just to freak them out.

What are some other options?

Friday, October 16, 2009

A Brief Book Review of Living Introverted

My friend Lee Ann Lambert published a book a few months ago called Living Introverted. She is also the host of the blog by the same name, which is an excellent resource. She reviewed my book last week and I wanted to return the favor by posting a review on Amazon. I also want to share it with my blog readers:

----A Nice Addition to the Introverted Family

I should say at the outset that the author and I are friends (since we are both introverts, all this means is that we have exchanged a few emails). But as someone who has written my own book on introverts and facets of the larger culture, I am knowledgeable on the topic and am committed to thinking and writing about it with excellence and with as much objectivity as possible.

When I read a book, I assess it on two criteria: 1. Does the book accomplish what it sets out to accomplish? and 2. Is what it accomplishes meaningful? After reading Living Introverted, I think the answer to both questions is yes, which is why I rate it with 5 stars.

While there are outstanding books on the topic (my favorites are The Introvert Advantage and Introvert Power), most of them are lengthy and detailed. What we didn't have prior to Living Introverted is a primer on introversion, an accessible, practical introduction for those people who don't want to start with a long, research-heavy book written by a Ph.d. The author does not purport to be a psychologist or a scholar or an expert (though I think she sells herself short, as she interviewed around 100 people and does have perhaps the best blog on the topic). She uses words like "tool" and "overview" to describe her book, and that is what it is. It gives all kinds of practical descriptions and suggestions for how to live as an introvert in a world that heralds extroversion. After helpfully explaining what introversion is and what it isn't, she helps introverts with socializing, relationships, work, raising children, public speaking, saying no, and surviving the holidays (!). My favorite chapter is "What Extroverts Need to Know," an exceptionally helpful and practical guide for how introverts and extroverts can live together and learn to compromise.

Not every introvert will relate to all of it, which is something the author readily admits in the introduction. I think the SJ part of her personality creeps into the pages; not all of us will relate to her description of introverts as "analytical" or "having strong organizational skills." But anyone reading my book will surely see the intuitive part of my nature shining through as well.

I think this book will be helpful for introverts looking for a practical, short introduction that they can immediately apply, and probably even more specifically for those introverts who are pretty deep into introversion and struggle with many social occasions.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Survival Guide

Here's a thorough and very thoughtful post, which may prove especially helpful for those introverts who fit into the "highly sensitive" category:

Survival Guide for the Quieter Species

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Temperamental Geography

I'm working on a theory. The farther north you go from the equator, the more introverts you get by percentage. What do you think?

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The very first book review

I am committed to not making Introverted Church into a mere shill for Introverts in the Church, but occasionally I do want to share some publicity. Here is the very first book review of Introverts in the Church, courtesy of Lee Ann Lambert, author of Living Introverted. (I've also written a review of her book on Amazon)

You'll notice the box on the far right sidebar entitled "About Introverts in the Church." I'll be updating that over the next few months without necessarily posting about updates. Previews: Christian Century will be printing an excerpt of chapter 6 - "The Ability to Lead" - sometime in October or November, and Christianity Today will be printing a book review sometime in the next 3 months. Check out that box regularly if you're interested! Just added to it: an interview with Christian Retailing, including my answers to the questions 1. How have introverts been overlooked in the church? and 2. Is there assumption that people who are alone are lonely and sad? (Bonus: there is a giant picture of my head there too - I'm working on getting a smaller picture).

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Available book excerpts

You can now read the introduction and chapter one of Introverts in the Church on the InterVarsity Press website. Chapter 1 is titled "The Extroverted Church."

Introverts in the Church - IVP

Monday, October 5, 2009

Advice from a fellow writer

As the release of Introverts in the Church draws near, I have asked some veteran writers for any advice they have in how to prepare for your first book to be published. My friend Andy Crouch, writer at Christianity Today and the author of the absolutely phenomenal book Culture Making (which won a Christianity Today book of the year award - a really big deal), sent me a fantastic response. He and I thought it would be good to make available for other writers or those interested in the book publishing process. He posted it on his website and you can read it by following this link:

Letter to a soon-to-be-published author

Thursday, October 1, 2009


October 2009. I've been waiting for this month for 5 years. The public release of Introverts in the Church.

On another level, I've been waiting for this month ever since I discovered a knack for writing when I was 10 years old. Thanks to all of you for helping this dream come true for me. I am grateful for your support, encouragement, and input over the past 2 1/2 years that this blog has been in existence. I know I'm not the best at posting and responding to comments, but I relish the opportunity to hear your thoughts and interact with you. Even if I haven't directly responded to your comment, I assure you that I have reflected on it, and many of them have greatly improved and balanced the content of the book.

As a first time author, I want to ask for your help. There were over 520,000 books published in the United States last year (!) and it is exceedingly difficult for a newcomer to gain a hearing in the white noise of the publishing world. Here are some ways you can help:

1. Pre-order the book: (lowest price)
InterVarsity Press (will ship soonest)
Barnes and Noble
CBD Canada
(the highest number of pre-orders so far - I'm thinking about moving there)

2. Tell others about it - especially pastors and other leaders.

3. Read it when it arrives and review it online. Blog reviews and Amazon reviews are greatly helpful. If you review it on your blog or GoodReads, would you also copy and paste it to Amazon? You can now do video reviews on Amazon.

Link to it on Twitter, Facebook, blogs, and other social media. Here's the mini link to its Amazon page:

5. Join the Facebook fan page for Introverts in the Church.

6. Link to my online interview with Jamie Arpin-Ricci:

7. Point people to this blog

If you have other ideas, please let us all know! Thanks so much, everyone. Even the most introverted author can't do this alone! :)

Oh, and you can now "search inside" the book on Amazon. You can see the cover, table of contents, and if you click "surprise me" it will take you to an excerpt.