You write 41,000 words a year in emails: study

That’s equal to a book about the length of “The Great Gatsby.” And you think you can’t write a novel. Plus, the illnesses that killed famous authors, working on a tablet, writing in the morning, and more.

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Most writers approach any writing task with great care—even when it’s simply an email. A study this week reveals how much we should care about the quality of our e-mail prose—or maybe why we should direct creative efforts elsewhere.

Also this week: stories about the illnesses of writers, writing memoirs, and the case for writing in the morning.

A novel’s worth of email: A recent survey of users of Cue, a personal assistant app, showed that emailers compose more than 41,000 words each year—enough to produce a novel slightly shorter than “The Great Gatsby.” There is some level of creativity that goes into writing emails. You must tailor the writing to the audience, which prompts the question: Could that creative energy be better spent?

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