Dear Auntie Romaniac: can’t wait, won’t wait…



Dear Auntie Romaniac,

I’m suffering from a bad case of  impatience. Life seems to be one long wait at the moment, mainly for emails that refuse to arrive.

I know it’s good to have lots of projects on the go and fingers in plenty of pies (am talking competition entries, submissions to agents etc, not real pies, sadly) but how can I get away from this constant, obsessive checking of my inbox? I still need to be at the computer to finish the WIP and it’s way too tempting to just have just one more little glance…aaargh, I’m doing it again!

Yours desperately,



Jan: You have my full sympathy on this one, Celia. I had to take drastic measures recently when I was working on my edits by actually unplugging the internet router/modem, you name it … Other than that, I find what (sometimes) works for me is to set the alarm on my phone (stick with me on this!) for certain times during the day/eve, say 10am, 1pm, 4pm, etc, and only look at emails/Facebook/Twitter at these points. I’m sure you will receive better solutions than these, so good luck! 🙂

13 thoughts on “Dear Auntie Romaniac: can’t wait, won’t wait…

    • It’s a great idea of jan’s, I’m definitely going to have a go – good luck with it! Celia x

  1. I find stepping away from technology is the best thing to do. Apparently there is an app that you can install to do it although no idea what it is called.

    • It’s probably called ‘twins’ in your case! I’m going to be firm with myself xxx

  2. I haven’t tried turning the internet off, I think my teenagers would lynch me within about 30 seconds! I try to keep myself busy with other projects and pretend I haven’t submitted anything to anyone – easier said than done. *casually wanders off to check emails …*

  3. My bete noir is the (very) necessary tweeting and retweeting. I’ve tried to cut it down to manageable proportions but it is still time suckage – but it DOES sell books and brings me new readers. I have unsubscribed from notification to most blogs – not this one, of course – because I was becoming overwhelmed with notification in my intray. That helps. Facebook is both a distraction and a pleasure as I love interacting with readers and friends on there. We all have to manage it in our own way, whatever that might be. The simple fact is, without networking etc the new author has a job to get noticed. Luckily, I am not submitting to agents (that’s a whole other set of problems.) Argh . . .

  4. I wish I could get the hang of twitter, but in this case it’s a good job I haven’t! Good luck with the current one, Lizzie
    Celia xxx

  5. I don’t leave Outlook open while I’m writing so can’t see emails coming in and tell myself I have to reach a certain time or word count before I can open it up again (I apply the same rule to FB and Twitter) of course I don’t always stick to it…

  6. Big sympathy, Celia. I’m taking notes from some of the suggestions here as I’m likely to be awaiting emails in the coming weeks once I start submitting my completed WIP. However, having given this problem some thought I may have come up with the perfect solution for you… Come here and stay with me!

    My summerhouse (which you’re previously acquainted with) is the perfect place to work from. There is electricity, warmth, light, a comfy chair, desk, kettle, tin of biscuits, birds outside – in fact, everything a writer needs – and NO INTERNET CONNECTION.

    I know not everyone has a summerhouse but I’d certainly suggest if the day job doesn’t allow you to come camp with me until your current WIP is finished that you find somewhere; maybe a little cafe or base, even in your car, where there’s no Wifi but you can still plug in the laptop or sit and write longhand in a notebook. Irrespective of waiting for emails and checking for them every five minutes, there are no temptations to browse on-line without a broadband connection which is likely to be far more productive! xxx

  7. Oh, that sounds blissful! have experienced the joys of your summerhouse for sleeping and drinking purposes, but not for writing! Hope to see you very soon, C xx

  8. I like Jan’s idea of the alarm and I try to stick to specific times but I often find myself picking up my phone for one reason, ending up on twitter and forgetting what the original reason was. 😦

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