INTJ Mastermind 0r Villain: How to Use MBTI Personality Profiles in Writing.
INTJ Mastermind 0r Villain
I am constantly doing research to become a better writer. A while back I saw a post on Pinterest about how and why the villains in some stories were inaccurate. It starts out explaining about one particular MBTI personality type that is most often portrayed as the villain in fiction─the INTJ. I had never heard of MBTI(<---follow link to find out more) before. I am reading along about the INTJ and wait a minute . . .that’s me . . . they are describing me! I am the villain. Well, that explains a lot.
Two things happened as I consumed and analyzed everything I could find out about my personality type. One, I felt (a little) bad because, hey, I am the villain. Makes you feel somewhat sorry for my family and friends, doesn’t it? And two, it was proof that I am not some alien lifeform sent to Earth from God only knows where. There are others like me─not many, but there are some.
Since then, I have seen many post about using personality types in writing. They all tell what it is like to be a certain type, but I have yet to find one that truly relates to building characters. I will be doing a series of blogs on how to use MBTI personality types in writing and I am starting with the one I know best─INTJ.
If your Character is an INTJ, he . . .
Will be constantly learning, evolving, improving. If he finds a better way to be, he will start doing that.
Will be independent; probably the most independent character in your story.
Will need time alone to think. If this does not happen, he will become agitated.
Will be a nonconformist. He will go against the norm if the norm does not make sense to him.
Is able to see both sides of every argument. This may be irritating to those close to him who want him to only think of their side.
Is extremely honest and direct. He will not candy-coat. Others may think him rude, though he may not see it this way.
Will be more open-minded than you would think. He will at least consider the “wrong” choice to see if it really is wrong.
Sees things the way they really are but won’t necessarily condemn you if he thinks you’re wrong.
Will analyze everything.
Constantly observe and gather data. (sometimes without even knowing that he is doing it) These pieces come together causing him to perceive things he hasn’t actually been told.
Will be a natural leader but won’t necessarily take on that role.
Be smarter than most people think. Because he observes more than he says, his intelligence is not always obvious.
Knows his own faults and strengths. This may come off as arrogance.
Will probably not express his feelings but others may be able to tell by his expressions. INTJ’s are well known for their “evil stare.”
Will absolutely hate small talk. If he does strike up an in depth conversation with another, it will be on a subject of great interest to him.
Will do what he thinks is right regardless of what others think. When he says he doesn’t care what others think, he really means it.
Shows less emotion than other characters.
So, how do you use this information in your writing? You could pick and choose which types you want to use and build your characters around that. For me, the story comes first. Scenes play out in my head, and I write them down. The characters start to come to life for me. At some point early on, I start to look at each character and ask myself what type best suits them. Then I use those personality descriptions to ‘flesh out’ the character. Studying each character’s type also tells me what they would and would not do with each situation that pops up.
Be careful not to have too many characters in your writing with the INTJ personality. It is a rare type, especially among females. A female INTJ is one of the two rarest types. So far, I have one INTJ character in my books. Prince Rian Barnali is a child in the first two books of my The Kingdoms of Kearnley series, so I had not paid much attention to him until I got to book three where he is the hero. I was pleasantly surprised to find out he was my type.
Something else to consider- each individual has different life experiences which will affect the degree of each trait. For instance, an INTJ may be more in touch with their feelings if they have had extreme cases of trauma in their lives. Because INTJ’s are always looking to improve themselves, they may pick up on traits that do not come natural to them if they have observed their benefits and adapted accordingly. For example, my husband is a friendly ESFP. I have adopted some of his friendly ways because I can see the benefits of being friendly.
Only you can decide what traits you want your characters to have and why. Using the bullet points above, you might rate each one on a scale of 1-3 according to the degree of each trait your character will possess. It will mark each character as an individual while keeping within their personality type.
Fictional INTJ Characters
Andy Dufresne (Shawshank Revival)
Mr. Burns (The Simpsons)
INTJ Mates Who are they most compatible with?
ESTP or ESFP
I will add that the personality type that seems to understand me the most is ESTJ. That is not to say that we would be the best together in a romantic relationship.
Thomas Jefferson (more presidents are INTJ’s than any other type)
James K. Polk
Ulysses S. Grant
Chester A. Arthur
John F. Kennedy
Sir Isaac Newton
What type are you? <---Click to find out.
INTJ Summery- The Mastermind (introversion, intuition, thinking, judgment) About 2% of the population and only about 1 in 4 of that 2% are female.
Ask “Does it work?” to everything. Independent thinker, free from constraints of authority, convention, or sentiment. Perfectionist to a degree. Have trouble with personal relationships, especially romantic ones. They really want other people to make sense. Analytical. High standards for themselves and others. Most comfortable working alone. Less sociable than other types. They will often take the lead if no one else steps up or if they find weakness in the current leader. Practical, logical and creative. They have low tolerance for emotionalism. They seek new angles or novel ways of looking at things. Insightful and mentally quick but it may not be apparent to others. They care less about what others think. They may be the most independent of all of the sixteen types. They desire efficiency. Honest to a fault. They are acutely aware of their own abilities and limitations. Harmony in relationships and home life tends to be extremely important to them. They seem cold and indifferent when in fact they are almost hypersensitive to signals of rejection. May think small talk is a waste of time.
To continue to my next post in this series click --->ENTJ Executive