36 Warning Signs That You Are Spending Too Much Time Researching (and Not Enough Time Writing)

Greetings! I’ve been absent finishing up the Scavenger Hunt and then resting after editing The Conn-Mann Chronicles I. But I have a special treat for you today–a guest blog post on one of my big problems…when is it time to stop researching? Teressa Campbell of http://chasingrabbittrails.com shares her thoughts on this topic below. Enjoy!


You know that you need to write, but you are not sure about the topic.

What do you do? Turn to research, of course.

After an hour of research, you realize you might have enough information to write, but just to be sure, you decide to spend a little bit more time.

Next thing you know it is time for bed and you haven’t written a thing.

How do you know you have spent too much time researching?

Do You Resemble These Online Research Warning Signs?

  1. You know how to find information in the Library of Congress’ online website.
  2. You know that the Library of Congress has an online website.
  3. You dream of visiting the Library of Congress someday just to read some of the information that you can’t find on the website.
  4. You have read Wikipedia over a thousand times.
  5. You know what Wikipedia is.
  6. You know which websites have inaccurate information, but check back every so often to make sure they haven’t improved.
  7. If the article you are reviewing has a link in it, you click on it. After all, it must be pertinent information if there is a link, right?
  8. Your computer warns you that there is not enough virtual memory.
  9. You know what virtual memory is.
  10. You have watched most of the videos on YouTube regarding research methods.
  11. You know that there are videos on YouTube regarding research methods.
  12. Your eye doctor gives you a prescription for glasses made especially for technology due to eyestrain.
  13. You know that there is a prescription for glasses made especially for technology due to eyestrain.
  14. Your friends are wondering when you are going to finish the first chapter… it has been two years already.
  15. You were given a week to write a 300 word blog post and finished it at the last minute because you didn’t have enough information.
  16. You have gathered enough information to create an e-book when researching a blog post.
  17. You start researching information on time management and productivity even though you are writing about the effects of some disease.

Even Offline Research Has Warning Signs!

18. You know what a library is.
19. You know where your library is.
20. Your librarian knows you by name.
21. You know what a librarian is.
22. You know the librarian by name.
23. You know when the librarian will be at the library.
24. You have your own study room at the library and everyone knows it is for you.
25. You know the hours the libraries near you are open.
26. You know where the libraries are that close later than those nearby.
27. You know how much time it takes to get to the library and factor it into your research time.
28. You have filled more than one spiral notebook with information and have started on a second.
29. You need a handcart to carry all of your research to and from your car.
30. Your car’s gas mileage has plummeted because your car is full of your research material.
31. You have napkins filled with information you read on the wall of the local restaurant that displays old ads.
32. You take notes while watching TV.
33. You take notes in the magazine aisle at the grocery store.
34. You take notes in the produce section at the grocery store.
35. You take notes from your child’s homework because it would assist with your research.
36. Your child wasn’t able to complete their homework because you had his or her school books.

Are You A Research-aholic??

How many of the warning signs are you displaying?

If you are displaying more than eight signs, it may be a signal that you have a research problem.

Get a timer to keep your research on track.

If not a timer, a friend can help or if you have children, they usually crave attention after you have been researching for a few minutes.

Use their need for attention as a signal it’s time to start writing and stop researching.

Oh, and give them their homework back before they have to repeat a grade!


About the Author: Teressa Campbell is a Nashville Based Freelance Writer, Blogger, Ghostwriter, Copywriter, and Training Consultant. In her spare time, she helps others find their true potential at http://chasingrabbittrails.com

About RieSheridanRose

Rie Sheridan Rose multitasks. A lot. Her short stories appear in numerous anthologies, including Nightmare Stalkers and Dream Walkers Vols. 1 and 2,  and Killing It Softly. She has authored twelve novels, six poetry chapbooks, and lyrics for dozens of songs. She tweets as @RieSheridanRose.
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2 Responses to 36 Warning Signs That You Are Spending Too Much Time Researching (and Not Enough Time Writing)

  1. Lorraine Marie Reguly says:

    I laughed when I read this! Thanks, I needed a laugh today.


  2. Glad you liked it Lorraine!


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