RWTI: Richman Writer Type Indicator

Katherine Cook Briggs and Isabel Briggs Myers Proved that Psychological Training is Not Necessary for Creating a Personality Type Indicator

Many people who know me are aware of my childish interest in psychological tests. The one I’ve forced practically everyone I’ve known to take since I was in sixth grade is the Keirsey Temperament Sorter, which seems very similar to the MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) and categorizes people based on four temperaments: Extravert or Introvert; Sensing or Intuiting; Thinking or Feeling; and Judging or Perceiving. I am curious if I can make correlations between this scientifically unreliable “personality test” and my own scientifically unreliable sorter, designed specifically for people to determine what sort of writer they are.

Here it goes. Feel free to give me feedback so I can continue to improve the statistical validity.

For each question, answer yes or no. For the questions that receive a yes, put a point in the corresponding box below.

Feel free to complete this version or the REVISED (and perhaps improved) ONE further down.

1)      I like to hear voices and can.

2)      I hear music in words.

3)      I am interested in the physical world.

4)      I think writers are really cool.

5)      I’m interested in cause effect relationships: if this happens then…

6)      I’m interested in the experience of cognitive surprise.

7)      I’m interested in making sense of reality.

8)      I’m interested in being seen as artsy.

9)      Human interaction and motivation fascinate me.

10)  Word associations and sounds fascinate me.

11)  Finding patterns in the mess of actually lived lives and experiences fascinates me.

12)  Talking to other writers about the mysterious process of writing fascinates me.

13)  I like to make sense of the world by imagining people in scenarios and seeing what happens to them.

14)  I like to make sense of the world by making wild logical associations.

15)  I like to make sense of the world by analyzing reality.

16)  I like to make sense of the world by categorizing people based on how creative they are.

17)  Being right is not important to me.

18)  Being right is not possible in my eyes; I wouldn’t know it if I saw it.

19)  Being right is important to me.

20)  Being right is just being.

21)  Descriptions, sensory details, and images are as important as trees to a forest.

22)  Descriptions, sensory details, and images are as important as a tree to one climbing a tree.

23)  Descriptions, sensory details, and images are as important as bark to a tree—the more closely you look at it, the more you’ll notice.

24)  Descriptions, sensory details, and images are as important as the tree that falls in a forest when no one is there.

25)  The most impressive use of logic is the recreation of it based on real patterns that exist in the real world.

26)  The most impressive use of logic is the rearrangement of it, which often includes turning it on its head.

27)  The most impressive use of logic is recognizing it in existing scenarios and bringing it to light.

28)  The most impressive use of logic is abolishing it and gaining mental freedom.

29)  Money does not guide my actions but I like the possibility that it could become a part of my life—perhaps in huge amounts.

30)  Money does not interest me or motivate me.

31)  Money is best in reliable and fair amounts—certain amounts of work should earn certain amounts of money.

32)  Money is the bane of all existence. You shouldn’t let it rule/corrupt your actions. It should not affect any of your decisions.

1) 2) 3) 4)
5) 6) 7) 8)
9) 10) 11) 12)
13) 14) 15) 16)
17) 18) 19) 20)
21) 22) 23) 24)
25) 26) 27) 28)
29) 30) 31) 32)

Totals:             F____              P____              N____             WB____

Once you total your Yeses in each column, you can determine if you have more in the F, P, N, or WB category. Here are the results:

F=Fiction writer. You are interested in a combination of the real world and the imagined world and are most satisfied by showing relationships and patterns through the most interesting examples and scenarios the human mind can conceive.

P=Poet. You are guided by surprise and have an inner ear that hears music others might miss. You are more interested in the spiritual and or philosophical than the concrete, but value addressing the abstract through concrete representation.

N=Nonfiction writer. You are interested in patterns and value the real, the right—you believe in being right, don’t buy exaggerations of relativity. You are interested in understanding the world better and believe people can learn by observing and analyzing the actual.

WB=Wanna Be. You love being a writer and think writers are fascinating, but you’re more creative than productive. Many of your ideas are too complicated to actually fit into the constraints of words and you are searching for new ways of expression that move beyond the usual means to which people too often fall prey.

If you come up with equal numbers in one or more categories, you are a Genre Bender. This means you are less easily categorized, highly creative, and work from internal patterns yet unknown to human kind. In other words, you are a genius and are uncategorizable. Enjoy your superiority and try to be kind to those of us who are bitter.

What are you? What questions should be added and subtracted—for the purposes of scientific reliability?

REVISED TEST (improved one hour after original was created): Please circle one letter for each number. In instance in which more than one applies, choose the one that best describes your views/sentiments.

1)
a. I like to hear voices and can.
b. I hear music in words.
c. I am interested in the physical world.
d. I think writers are really cool.

2)
a. I’m interested in cause effect relationships: if this happens then…
b. I’m interested in the experience of cognitive surprise.
c. I’m interested in making sense of reality.
d. I’m interested in being seen as artsy.

3)
a. Human interaction and motivation fascinate me.
b. Word associations and sounds fascinate me.
c. Finding patterns in the mess of actually lived lives and experiences fascinates me.
d. Talking to other writers about the mysterious process of writing fascinates me.

4)
a. I like to make sense of the world by imagining people in scenarios and seeing what happens to them.
b. I like to make sense of the world by making wild logical associations.
c. I like to make sense of the world by analyzing things that have already happened.
d. I like to make sense of the world by categorizing people based on how creative they are.

5)
a. Being right is not important to me.
b. Being right is not possible in my eyes; I wouldn’t know it if I saw it.
c. Being right is important to me.
d. Being right is just being.

6)
a. Descriptions, sensory details, and images are as important as trees to a forest.
b. Descriptions, sensory details, and images are as important as a tree to one climbing a tree.
c. Descriptions, sensory details, and images are as important as bark to a tree—the more closely you look at it, the more you’ll notice.
d. Descriptions, sensory details, and images are as important as the tree that falls in a forest when no one is there.

7)
a. The most impressive use of logic is the re-creation of it based on real patterns that exist in the real world.
b. The most impressive use of logic is the rearrangement of it, which often includes turning it on its head.
c. The most impressive use of logic is recognizing it in existing scenarios and bringing it to light.
d. The most impressive use of logic is abolishing it and gaining mental freedom.

8)
a. Money does not guide my actions but I like the possibility that it could become a part of my life—perhaps in huge amounts.
b. Money does not interest or motivate me.
c. Money is best in reliable and fair amounts—certain amounts of work should earn certain amounts of money.
d. Money is the bane of all existence. You shouldn’t let it rule/corrupt your actions. It should not affect any of your decisions.

Totals:

a: _____

b: _____

c: _____

d: _____

a=Fiction Writer

b= Poet

c=Non-fiction Writer

d=Wanna Be Writer

See descriptions above.

 

18 Comments

  • Brett says:

    Sweet post, dudette. This is fun.

    Here are my totals, and I’m happy to say I’m a poet! What did you get?

    Totals: F 2 P 7 N 3 WB 0

    • Shira Richman says:

      I tried to complete the assessment as I originally wrote it (the version you did) and realized I was putting “yes” for every question. So then I revised the test and got eight b’s (which means I’m poet to the core).

      • Brett says:

        I took the new test and I got:

        a: 0, b: 7, c: 1, and d: 0.

        Poet again! Though I’m sure I was biased somewhat, given I knew what the answers pertained to.

        d: _____

  • Laura says:

    This is an interesting idea.

    My scores: F7, P2, NF5, WB0

    I wonder, though, if fiction writers are inherently going to have high scores in NF because fiction, though it isn’t reality, is often so reflective of reality, and is often largely nonfiction in disguise.

    • Shira Richman says:

      Great points! I changed one of the uses of the vague term “reality,” but in looking at my revision, I see I still have it somewhere else. I’ll keep this in mind for the next batch of revisions.

  • Amy says:

    Ha! Fun. I, too, love psychological tests. This one seems fairly accurate to me:
    F3, P6, N3, WB0

  • tanya.debuff says:

    I’m N5, P4, F2, WB3. RE question 19, though, I think “being right” might not be the best wording. I’m not interested in being right as an NF writer, but I am interested in being as faithful as I can to facts while also using emotional truth. I’m also not sure about 26 and 27. I said 26, turning logic on its head, which I think is what a lot of NF writers do, especially essayists.

    I’m glad to see I’m part poet. I’m also more Wanna Be than fiction. :)

    This is cool. I’ve transcribed for companies that do a sort of life coaching for your business life, and they used the Meyers-Briggs a ton to help folks interact with each other, and it helps to know how the other person reacts to certain situations, etc. Great post!

    • Shira Richman says:

      I love your insight that non-fiction writers are also interested in turning logic onto its head. My understanding of the range of what non-fiction can accomplish is embarrassingly simplistic, so thanks for your ideas. I also like what you say about being faithful to facts. I see many revisions of this type indicator in my future.

  • Shawn Vestal says:

    In the first test, I’m non-fiction writer by a large margin — and I’m a poet on the second test. Which means I’m really a wannabe — a wannabe fiction writer.

    I always struggle with either/or, yes/no questions — i always feel like I’m picking the less wrong answer, rather than the right one.

    • Shira Richman says:

      I knew you had to be poet! I’m so glad to have my suspicions verified. Welcome home, my friend.

      I’m also a wanna be fiction writer. The only difference between us is you are a ridiculously successful and seemingly authentic wanna be. Which really negates your WB-ness.

      • Maya says:

        I’d like to add that fiction writers who score as poets are probably superior fiction writers. Really, I’m just seconding what Shira said about you, Shawn.

        (Great test, Shira! I took the revised version, and scored 6 b’s and 2 c’s. . .so I’m mostly a poet with some NF writer in me. . . which is accurate, because I write mostly poetry and a little NF. I’ve tried fiction, but I always fail.)

      • Shawn Vestal says:

        i think seemingly is the operative word. great post, shira.

  • Marcus says:

    Hrmm. I graded out as a poet on both versions, by a 2:1 ratio. Am I wasting my time writing fiction?

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