I used to be the latter, sleeves rolled up and wading into the furore of internet debates, angry from a left/progressive perspective and expressing myself at every turn. It’s a good way to identify yourself, it creates allies and defines your opponents.
I gave it all up when I started writing.
Why? Well, some of those reasons are personal and professional.
Professionally, I don’t want to alienate anyone from my books and although I do have political opinions, I’d prefer to discuss those in person and not be defined by them online.
That might sound shallow, but then if I go into the personal reasons, hopefully that makes a bit more sense.
Personally, I have mellowed and expanded my position on any number of issues, I extend to others the idea that they believe with as much forthrightness and consideration the things that I would once oppose without a moment’s hesitation. I try to be kind because we’re all trying to fight battles within ourselves and with the people we love. We’re all just human beings who’ve been wounded and have wounded in return.
I vote, I think about things and then don’t feel that they’re any more special than yours are. If I talk about things like women’s autonomy, or the cultural expectations on their sexuality, well I write about that in the books and it’s interesting. I’m fulfilled and doing what I love.
I am not blind to the suffering of the world, I refuse to bear certain injustices but I think about things and come to decisions but I won’t go the extra mile of using it to define myself in your eyes.
Anyway, random thoughts but there you go.