I'm a terrible introvert and would prefer to be in my cave talking to people via email only. I like small doses of people. I like to think before I say things. I like to weigh up, balance out, check my emotions, sift through implications and probabilities before I utter a word. But lord, when I talk, I talk! And if I'm tired, tipsy, overwhelmed or any other thing that cuts down my reserve, I can talk unchecked, unstopped forever.
And that's what I forgot about the conference. I'm all out of reserve awfully quickly. I think it's the bombarding nature of women with hugs, squeals of excitement, and fast fast chatter. As soon as I'm there, something wells up inside me and a year's worth of talking happens.
And it's not just talking. It's people watching, listening, planning characters, analysing people's actions and motivations. There are so many different people, all with a common bond, but with many and varied was of working and interacting.
It's also listening and learning from people more experienced in the industry, more experienced with the craft. And they're so giving. Nothing is really sacred once you're under the conference cone of sharing. You know the saying, what happens at conference, stays at conference. Well, it doesn't stay there for me, it comes with me in a small part of my mind where I spend months processing it to work out how this new knowledge fits into my world.
The huge high from meeting like-minded souls cannot be described. In a world where you often feel odd, this one weekend makes sure you feel accepted, included, understood.
Sure a few odd things happen - human nature is always a bit foreign to me. But the overwhelming feeling of love and acceptance overrules.
I have to admit I snuck out to dinner on my own last night to quieten my aching brain. I intended to come back to my room and sleep...but I was waylaid in the lobby and ended up spending a few more hours talking to people I hadn't had much of a chance to talk with earlier.
My voice is hoarse, I have few verbal words left, (you may notice lots of typed words!) but I still have people I didn't get to talk with, or talk enough with.
I've done such a bad job of capturing how I feel...but it's a start :) now I'm taking my overwhelmed mind off to Perth for a quiet afternoon before flying home tomorrow...back to my cave and my email chatting! Ah, comfort :)