Aaron Caycedo-Kimura was in a creative rut. That’s when the INFJoe cartoon series was born. His book, Text, Don’t Call: An Illustrated Guide to the Introverted Life, is the long-awaited collection of those cartoons. The book comes out today and features 115 illustrations, including fan favorites plus 43 brand new ones.
Aaron hopes his book will encourage and validate introverts, as well as make them laugh. “I want as many introverts as possible to know that they are not alone and that introversion is not a defect, but rather a matter of natural wiring,” he tells me. For extroverted readers, the goal is to help them better understand and relate to the introverts in their lives.
Here’s a peek at some of Aaron’s cartoons:
Aaron draws inspiration from his own quiet life as well as the experiences of other introverts. And, “some were just crazy things I dreamt up,” he says. Family members, friends, and Aaron himself appear in the book, either as caricatures or as the inspirations behind the illustrations.
The name “INFJoe” refers to Aaron’s Myers-Briggs personality type. Growing up as an INFJ — the rarest of the 16 types, and one that is often misunderstood — was very difficult for him. “With these cartoons, I want to encourage others like me who may feel odd or out of place,” he explains.
Since the creation of the series in 2012, Aaron’s work has been featured in MTV News, on the Huffington Post, and all over the Internet. If you’re an introvert who has spent any amount of time online, you’ve probably seen his cartoons, which, with spot-on accuracy, showcase the joys and challenges of the introverted life.
Aaron, 54, and his wife live in Connecticut. In addition to cartooning, he loves to paint, craft, and write poetry.
His advice for introverts who feel out of place in an extroverted world: “Introvert on! Be true to your introverted selves. Know that you’re not alone, that you’re in good company. It’s good to educate those around you about introversion, but realize that some may just not get it. Bottom line, what’s most important is that we understand, accept, appreciate, and nurture ourselves.”
Some illustrations excerpted from TEXT, DON’T CALL: An Illustrated Guide to the Introverted Life by Aaron Caycedo-Kimura with the permission of TarcherPerigee, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC. Copyright© 2017 by Aaron T. Caycedo-Kimura
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