So many emails. So very, very, very many emails

I know that lots of people struggle with the size of their inboxes, but not me! I’ve maintained inbox zero for years. The secret, in my case, is that I don’t get very many emails. Aside from product offers and confirmations and list-servs, I get maybe three substantive emails a day.

Or, well, that used to be the case. But over time it’s slowly crept up! I don’t count anymore, but I must be up to like 7-10 substantive emails per day (you know, ones that require a reply on my part). That’s quite a lot! And some of them (interview requests, etc) require an hour or more to answer! And my novel isn’t even out yet!

How do people do this?

I remember Neil Gaiman once complaining that rather than being a writer who sometimes had to answer emails, he was in danger of becoming a professional email answerer who sometimes took time to write.

(Found the quote: “The biggest problem of success is that the world conspires to stop you doing the thing that you do, because you are successful. There was a day when I looked up and realised that I had become someone who professionally replied to email, and who wrote as a hobby.  I started answering fewer emails, and was relieved to find I was writing much more.”)

I guess at some point I’ll have to answer fewer emails. Which is kind of sad! I am a great one for answering emails. I’ll correspond with anyone. Writing good emails is one of my best skills. I’m probably better at writing thoughtful emails than I am at writing fiction.