Literary Lateness

I like to be punctual. In fact, I’m that annoying person who turns up 15mins early and expects everyone else to have done the same.

I even like deadlines. They keep me focused. I know for some they are a terrible thing, but I like being kept on the ball.

It seems these traits are not ‘writerly’, though.

Recently there seems to have been a spate of lateness (a late spate of late?) in the literary world. Mainly around the delivery of winners, newsletters and proofs.

Now, I know I’m not the easiest going person. But I am realistic. If you say the newsletter is coming ‘at the end of May’ I will expect it on the 31st. If winners are to be announced ‘next week’, I’ll refresh my emails on the Sunday.


If the email is coming ‘at the end of May’ and it’s now June, I do get irritated. If winners are announced ‘on the 20th’ and it’s the 22nd, I will be sad.

If I deliver writing late to a competition, assignment or job I will be penalised.

Not so those in charge, it seems. Has anyone else noticed this? I’m not asking for the world. Just for ‘the end of May’ not to mean ‘the start of June’.


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