From Fear to Excitement: My Journey as an Introvert on a Podcast
by Anca Antoci
If you came here from Twitter, you’re probably aware of the poll I conducted last week. I asked which type of content you would prefer to read more on my blog: book-related posts or personal ones. Well, the results favored personal posts, so here I am delivering the first one that has nothing to do with fantasy tropes or book lists. Instead, it’s all about me.
Normally, I don’t delve into personal matters, but today I’d like to share something that might be helpful to some of you. Like many writers out there, I happen to be an introvert. Now, whether or not you’re a writer, if you’re an introvert who overthinks things and doubts yourself, then please keep reading. This story is for you.
Some time ago, I received a message from Z.T. Soyoye, a fantastic author whose book, “The Unwanted,” I had previously reviewed on my blog. He mentioned he had been a guest on a podcast and when the host asked for recommendations, he graciously offered my name. Naturally, I was grateful for the recommendation, but at the same time, I was absolutely terrified. And in case you’re wondering why, let me shed some light on the situation.
I live in Romania, and I speak English as a second language. I use the term “speak” loosely. The truth is, I read and write in English every day without any issues, so it's not a matter of fluency. However, I rarely have the opportunity to speak English aloud. In other words, I’m a bit out of practice. And when I do speak, my Eastern European accent is quite noticeable and hard to shake off. It’s a part of my heritage, and there’s nothing to be ashamed of. But, at the same time, I was worried that I might come across as someone who couldn’t speak English fluently, and that could discourage potential readers from buying my books. I promise you, though, I write way better than I speak.
So, when Eldric reached out to me on Instagram and invited me for an interview on his podcast, “Eldric Talks,” I hesitated for a moment. Now, don’t get me wrong—I was genuinely excited to receive the invitation. However, I was worried about whether my spoken English would be good enough and if it might impact my brand negatively in the long run. Stepping out of my comfort zone was not an easy decision, but I eventually mustered the courage to take a leap of faith. Oh, did I mention I tend to overthink things? Yes, I’m quite aware of that. So, I simply told myself that I was overthinking again, and I accepted the invitation. We agreed upon a date and time that worked well for both of us.
Fear and excitement share a similar physiological response, did you know that? It’s true. The same chemicals are released in both situations, but the brain interprets them differently based on the context. So I told myself that I wasn’t scared. I was excited. And it worked wonders. Besides, during the interview, we were going to discuss me and my writing career—topics I was familiar with, not some sort of test or quiz.
Fast forward to the day of the interview. I can hardly believe how effortless and comfortable it turned out to be. What we initially planned as a 30 to 60-minute conversation unexpectedly transformed into a two-hour call. I'm sure Eldric will have plenty of work to do, editing it to fit an episode.
Any worries or insecurities I had simply vanished within the first few minutes. What followed was a genuinely friendly chat, just as Eldric had promised. We discussed my relationship with books as a child, my writing, reading, and plotting process. As an introvert, I rarely talk that much, but surprisingly, thanks to Eldric, it was much easier than I thought. I ranted quite a bit and actually felt comfortable doing so. And you know what, I no longer think my spoken English is that bad anymore. Sure, I have an accent, but I don’t believe people will judge me too harshly for it. Towards the end of the interview, Eldric gave me the opportunity to read the first page of my upcoming novel, “Midsummer Night’s Curse.” Strangely enough, speaking freely felt more natural and effortless than when I was reading.
All in all, I’m immensely grateful to Z.T. Sosoye for recommending me and to Eldric for interviewing me on his podcast. I genuinely had a lot of fun throughout the experience. So, if you’re an introvert like me and find yourself presented with an amazing opportunity that scares you because it takes you out of your comfort zone, my advice is simple: don’t say no. Instead, tell yourself that you’re not afraid. You’re excited. And then, take the plunge.
Thank you, my friends, for joining me on this journey. I appreciate your support and look forward to sharing more with you in the future.