Dear 100 Hour Board,
Let's get real for a second, do y'all really want people to email you? I know this might be a bit of a pain but if one of you could take a quick survey among writers to see who actually likes to receive emails or email back and forth with readers, who doesn't like receiving emails, who only does when specifically stated in an answer, and who says it just to be nice. I ask because a certain writer (I won't name names because it's not relevant) answered two questions of mine about some hard things I'd been through and at the end of both adamantly asked me to email them. After emailing said writer, I did I receive an awkward response telling me they didn't really know what to say and kind of writing me off. I wasn't offended or anything (I know y'all are busy) but I did feel embarrassed and stupid for bothering someone who I think asked me to email them out of kindness and not because they really planned on it. Just know that it's ok if you don't always want emails from your readers, we are very grateful that you even take the time to answer our questions. Much love, and thank you for everything!
I really like getting emails from readers, but I am absolutely rotten at responding to them. Just ask Spectre. When he was a reader, he emailed me a few times, and I usually responded to him every few weeks or so.
So if you email me, and I don't respond, it's not that I hate you or that I don't want to talk about something with you. I just suck at responding to personal email in a timely manner.
The Soulful Ginger
I enjoy getting emails from readers, because it's one of the few ways I get feedback on my answers. Also, if a question really resonates with me, sometimes I want to communicate further with the asker. But very few people ever email me, and I think that's probably true of most writers. That's why we're so desperate for reader love.
I'm not perfect at responding promptly, but I try to write back with substantial responses. But, like Zed mentions below, if emailing is just a reiteration of everything I already wrote in my answer, then I'm much less engaged in it.
I was just thinking about this right before you sent this - "I wish I would get emails from readers like the other writers do!"
Maybe the off-handedness comes from a lack of further knowledge we can give on certain issues. Also, I feel that if someone wants advice but does not want to socialize or simply talk, it can be hard to maintain a solely mentor-student relationship over a long period of time. I would love to create a relationship with readers (especially those of you who want to become future writers!).
Kind of like Luciana said, other than the "thumbs up" option below our answers, email is the only way we have to get feedback from our glorious readers. I don't do this job for the validation, but a little validation never hurts! I feel like we only ever hear back when we do something wrong, either with corrections or The Board Comment Board. I am all for learning more about information I researched, but I think people can be kinder in their corrections.
Hoping to get some positive validation and future friends in the form of emails at email@example.com,
I love getting reader emails. Recently I've been pretty busy, which makes me really tired, which makes it hard to make coherent paragraphs. So if it was me who seemed like I was trying to brush you off, I'm sorry. I was just trying to put my thoughts into words and finally gave up. I genuinely do want to help/communicate with people; it's just hard to do over the Internet sometimes.
Emails would show me that readers are interested in me and my answers. I'm not offended when I don't get them, but I would be ecstatic if I were to receive an email or two!
-Sunday Night Banter
I've only ever had emails from two readers (one of them was Ardilla before he became a writer), and it was really fun to get to know a little bit about them and see what they are interested in. I would love to have people shoot me an email, and the emails don't necessarily have to be about one of the answers I've written.
Amen and amen.
As in amen, we want emails, and amen, we suck at responding to them.
The Lone Musketeer, whose inbox is...lonely
I love getting emails from readers and emailing readers back. For reals.
I have gotten one email from a reader and it was because I responded to a question by only saying "email me." So the reader did. And I responded promptly. I would love more emails from readers, though.
P.S. What TSG said is true, I emailed her like twice and she responded a week later or something like that. Our conversation was delightful, just a little delayed.