Enneagram Authors: Type 3 – The Achiever

About the 3

Description from The Enneagram Institute

Threes are self-assured, attractive, and charming. Ambitious, competent, and energetic, they can also be status-conscious and highly driven for advancement. They are diplomatic and poised, but can also be overly concerned with their image and what others think of them. They typically have problems with workaholism and competitiveness. At their Best: self-accepting, authentic, everything they seem to be—role models who inspire others.

  • Basic Fear: Of being worthless
  • Basic Desire: To feel valuable and worthwhile

For the 3, I got to interview my friend JHD!

Interview with JHD

Hi, JHD! Can you share a little bit about yourself and what you write?

Hello! My name is JHD Paul and I write mostly fantasy, though I have been known to do a Christian contemporary romance and others of the like.

What is your enneagram type, and how do you feel about it?

I am a Type Three, and proud! Mostly. xD

I think all of us tend to resent the more negative tendencies our types have, and I’m not an exception. But I am glad my type helps me with what I value in myself: productivity and achievement. (Which… I guess it kinda goes in circles because you value it so you’re good at it so you value it… anyway.)

Do you find that your enneagram type impacts your writing process? How so, or why not?

This is a bit of a tricky question, because I’m not sure what other types’ writing processes look like? I’m the only writer Three I know about the writing process of, hehe. But I can guess.

I am, stereotypically, deadline/checkpoint-oriented, and writing with a process in general matters a lot to me. I am still trying to find a process that consistently works for me, but I think my need for checkboxes and a way to track progress is part of the reason I’m a Plotter. (This has been a very grudging realization; discovery writing is so romanticized these days that I tried soooo hard to make it work for me but just couldn’t. Not even Plantsing works for me xD. Plotter all the way)

What strengths do you find in your writing or process that tie in with your enneagram type?

Goals and motivation are things I can come up with fairly easily. It’s quite nice xD. I know how to make a plan and reach a goal (though I am still figuring out what realistic goals look like for me).

What weaknesses do you find in your writing or process that tie in with your enneagram type?

I… am ambitious. To say the least.

But yeah, I tend to be all wRITING PROJECTSSSS and rEADING PROJECTSSS and aLLLL THE PROJECTSSS and overextend myself xD. I’m still learning myself and what a fair amount of writing-related obligations is.

Do you think your type impacts how you create characters?

Hmm. Maybe? Though I don’t have a formula for character creation. I think my 4 wing and the importance of authenticity shows through here; I tend to let characters become themselves, and try to identify their character traits rather than create them. This is problematic when I want someone to have a certain sort of air and they’re just like no.

Do you think it impacts how you worldbuild?

Possibly. Though I think the hesitation here is mostly because I haven’t found a good worldbuilding process yet, rather than I don’t develop one (like with characters).

I also often get overwhelmed with worldbuilding and where to start, which is my want for a checklist and a process showing through.

Currently I tend to learn my world through the eyes of my character, because they know more about the different customs and cultures and prejudices than I do. I also find that if I can get into a place where I can develop some of the history, that helps too.

Do you think it impacts how you outline?

Definitely. I need to outline super deeply in order to be able to write quickly. My Threeness also appreciates the rapid progress that comes with small checkpoints.

Do you find that many of your protagonists are a similar type to yours, or very different?

I think neither. My characters tend to become themselves, and while large pieces of myself are very visible in them once one looks, I don’t find that their types are hugely similar or drastically different from mine. I think they’re good at covering all the bases. I have Twos, Eights, Sevens, Ones, Fives, etc. But then again, I don’t often type my characters or worry too much about what their type is.

If you have a strong wing, how does it impact your writing process, if at all?

I mentioned earlier my Four wing and how that affects character development, but other than that and even just generally I haven’t really been able to identify a super prominent wing in myself? I think I have both wings about equally.

What are your favorite and least favorite parts of the writing process (plotting, writing, editing)?

Draftinggg is the worrrrssst aughhhh.

Slogging through first drafts is, like, my least favourite thing xD. Though my enjoyment is directly proportional to how much I’ve outlined the scene (and the story) and how much I know what I’m doing. I don’t mind drafting if I can get excited about the story—having an alpha really helps with that; thanks a million to my alpha and all her encouragement (#wordsofaffirmation) last NaNo—but especially if I have to add a new scene or redo a scene after I’ve edited a bit, I don’t like first drafts.

Developmental edits are also tough, but I do enjoy and get excited about themes and such falling into place.

Line and copy edits are my favouriteeee. It’s so much fun to make everything all shinyyyy and polishhhed and aaaa.

I also really enjoy alphas, betas, and editors, and just getting any sort of feedback, hehe. (Though I have found that I have to be in a specific mood to address line edits and such from someone else or else I feel super discouraged and attacked)

Plotting is also super fun. I enjoy plotting quite a bit.

What are your favorite and least favorite aspects of the writing craft (setting, characters, theme, plot, prose, etc.)?

I don’t know if I dislike any of them? Characters are probably by far my favourite, but I get super excited about theme and plot too. I enjoy my prose; I think I’m developing a writing style I can be really proud of. Settings are fun to flesh out, though I don’t get super excited about them like I do the rest. I dunno.

Do you have any writing “rituals” (drinking tea, lighting a candle, putting on music) to get you in the mood to write?

Not specifically, but I do like putting together novel playlists, getting a hot drink and a snack, and reading back a scene to get in the mood before writing. I am also trying to be better in picking a time to write, which is… mostly working thus far.

What most inspires you to write?

This is a tricky question for some reason? I don’t know what inspires me most out of all the sources writers pull ideas from.

Though I will say that a huge amount of inspiration—or rather motivation, but I guess both—comes from my characters. They feel like real people—often I’ll have a character before I have their plot—and I love them as if they were real people (all the other writers understand). I get excited to step into their skin and spend time in their world and pretend they’re real for a few scenes.

What is your reason for writing?

I write to understand things my relatively sheltered life won’t teach me. I write to experience what my life won’t offer. I write to spend time with my fictional best friends, to enter a world where I can pet dragons if I want to. I write to create something I’m proud of, I write to feel accomplished. I write to tell stories in my heart and to influence people’s lives.

About JHD

JHD Paul is a Christian teen author who adores living in the Canadian Rockies. She is passionate about telling stories, living for Jesus, and also has a strange love for satin ribbons. You can find her listening to music all the time and spending too much time with her friends – both fictional and real.

She blogs at Maple Quill Penning Magic, so go check out her work!

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