Friday, April 10, 2009

The good side of not having a WIFI/ Internet connection

Maybe some of you have a set time for when to check your email, blogspot, websites or yahoogroups (social networking groups). Well, not this author. Time management? What’s that? That doesn’t exist in this author’s life, which I am sure my husband wishes I would try.

I am the kind that would check the inbox every five or so minutes (my yahoogroups mail comes in my Windows Live Mail account). Checking my mailboxes is almost like an addiction that gets in my way of writing. I am aware of this, but not doing anything to stop it. I have stories to edit and polish but couldn’t concentrate because I have to check my mail. Sad, huh?

Anyway, our recent trip to Disneyland helped me get away from the dratted little envelope I am itching to click right now. How? No internet connection. Yup.
Sitting inside the car with my laptop open and not getting the connection was like having a withdrawal. I was irritated and easily annoyed. I. Want. My. Internet. Subscribing to the hotel’s pricey internet connection came to mind, but I didn’t succumb to the pressure. So without my internet, my attention focused on the novel I was supposed to finish.

After two hours, I found myself staring at my finished novel. Inspired, I decided to write a short, which I also finished. Wow. For the first time, I wrote a story for over an hour without reading and replying to my emails in between. I saw the good side of not having an internet connection. Now, I began to analyze my situation. Could it be that the internet slowed down my writing productivity? Yes!

I realized that checking my email became a major distraction from doing my main task every day. Before my email addiction, I would fire up my coffee pot first thing in the morning. Not anymore. Checking my email took over the number one spot on my things to do. Okay, you might say, “well, there is nothing wrong with that.” See here, checking would mean reading the emails, then replying to them and maybe visit the links suggested on the email. By the time I was done checking my emails, I already lost a big portion of my time supposed to be spent in writing or editing.
Email is a distraction! Luckily, there is a solution. Switch off the WIFI connection. I know, I know. Email is important. We authors, have to communicate with our editors, author friends and readers. But the job that helps us make money should come first. Writing.

Write first. When you get tired and need a break, check your email. However, be aware of the time you spend reading and replying.

Okay, enough of the personal rant. :D Just want to share this news to everyone. My editor suggested that I write a series for my stand-alone Knight Brothers novel. That would mean writing four novels. Five when I add the story about the Knight brothers only sister. So, understanding about the negative side of my addiction came at the right time. Write first.

If you have good advice about time management post it here, any thoughts about email and internet use, we’d like to hear about it.

Happy Friday everyone!



M.E Ellis said...

Oh no, and I just ordered WIFI and a little Internet phone that lets me access my emails anywhere....


Faith said...

I hate to say this but I have no clue what wifi is. In my neck of the woods, we're lucking to get a trackphone to work let alone anything else.

Sandy said...


I have the same problem. I check email first thing in the morning, but with my coffee cup in hand. Do you have Facebook, too? I have facebook and myspace both. It's never ending.

Here's what I do when I'm in serious writing mode. On my pc, I look at email. On my laptop, I write. It's that simple for me, just get off the darn pc. Grin. That's easier said than done. lol


Tierney O'Malley said...

M.E.,It is great to have a WI-FI and the internet phone to access your email as long as its not getting in a way of your writing.

Faith, WI-FI is short for Wireless Fidelity. I am not an expert when it comes to technology, but here is what I understand about WI-FI. See, I have a router that is connected to my modem. The modem is connected to my Desktop Computer. The router sends the signal to my laptop giving me access to the internet. I can turn this WI-FI on and off my laptop.
Where is your neck of the woods? :D I am in Seattle

Sandy, I just opened a facebook account. Also, I have Friendster account that I use to communicate with my family and old friends. Yup, it is never ending! I like your style better. Use the pc for checking mails. I might try that. :)

Janice said...

Yup, I say your addicted.

Time management method number one, do your work first. Read email later.

Yeah, it's hard but you can do it.


Gracen Miller said...

I feel your addiction, Tierney. I'm addicted to e-mail too and check it every morning after my boys leave for school.

I lost my internet last summer for three days after lightening struck my wifi. I was miserable without it. Went to the library one day just so I could catch up on my e-mails, but I felt disconnected from the world. It was awful.

But it is very distracting and gulps precious time out of my day. I've been trying to pull away from it and the internet too. They're both too distracting. So, I avoid it until I start to feel like I'm getting the shakes and then I'll allow myself 15 minutes before I shut it down again. It helps shutting off the notice that lets you know each time you get an e-mail.

Great blog! And as sad as it is to say it, it's nice to know I'm not the only sufferer out there.

Dana Fredsti said...

You described to a 't' my bad writing habit. Or my bad NOT writing habit. Email, links, social networking, blogging... The times I can actually ignore the lure of 'you've got mail!' are the times I get the writing done.

Tierney O'Malley said...


"...but I felt disconnected from the world. It was awful."

I agree. Imagine when we were in Europe spending hours on the road. I was freaking miserable. My family knew about how I felt so everytime they spotted a sign for a free wi-fi,they would alert me. :D

No, you are not alone in this. I wonder if there is a group Internet Alcoholics Anonymous


Tierney O'Malley said...


To ignore the lure of the "You've got mail" is like ignoring a pair of black slingback open-toed sandals with a marked down price of 50% off. LOL Oh, If I could just ignore my mail... Switching off wi-fi worked for awhile. *sigh*

Tierney O'Malley said...


I'll try. I know it's a matter of discipline. I turned off my wi-fi while writing last night. someone trying to quit smoking, I succumbed to the pressure after about an hour or so. *bad me. smack!*

M.E Ellis said...

I've promised myself that I'll only use the Internet phone when away from home or on long journeys and have hidden it from myself hahaha. So, while travelling to our vacation spot in June, and while there, I can still waffle to my friends on Yahoo groups etc.

Last time we went away, after two days without my computer I went screwy. I can take my laptop this time too now. Yay.

Wi-Fi goes on my pc on Tuesday.



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