But I don't want to do the needy girl thing, "What are you thinking?" all the time. I'm pretty sure that just annoys guys!
This is gonna seem flippant, but I mean it seriously- So what if it annoys guys??
Monochrome doesn't always communicate well because he's so introverted. TGIB doesn't always communicate well because of his relationship history. I don't always communicate well because I take too long to get to the point/get distracted by other topics. One reason I think we work as well as we do, though, is because I TALK. About EVERYTHING. Do I sometimes come across as needy? Probably. But if the alternative is having something in my relationships blow up because of a lack of communication, I accept seeming needy occasionally as a small price to pay. And sometimes I even AM needy, and that's not necessarily a bad thing either, as long as I'm really listening to their responses and not just whining for attention.
How you talk matters, of course. Asking him what he's thinking because you really want to know is key. Being truly interested in what someone has to say is rarely going to come off as annoying. And especially in a new relationship, that's how you LEARN about the other person/people! Some of us are FANTASTIC at reading people. Awesome. Some of us (like me!) are not- we need the specific information because if we try to read between the lines we will get it WRONG, and that's no good for anyone.
I don't believe communicating well is a natural ability for most people- I think it's a skill you learn and that takes time. When everyone's open to the idea of working on how they communicate, it gets a lot easier, in my experience. It's when people are closed off because "this is how I am" that things are really difficult.