I'm into my third week of EVE now and still trucking along. And still working on getting into a Retriever. I would probably already be into one if I hadn't waffled so much in the first week or so. You see, EVE is not a game for rummaging around without a plan. Because skill training is done in real-time. proper planning is everything, which just reinforces what I had said in previous posts about it taking much longer to get anywhere than people might be used to. My character is of a military background, yet I started leveling up skills I needed for mining first. Then I would waffle and skill up some military skills for some PVE fun, then go back to industrial skills. Because of all that I'm still 16 days from my fully fitted Retriever, after which I had planned on skilling up into a Thorax for a little more fun. I might just skip the Thorax though because I'm already flying a L1/L2 fitted mission running Vexor (Cruiser). I could invest a little more skill time and fit it with some gear for PVP and think I would do okay in group fights.
In comparison to the other MMOs I've played this is the one that requires the most investment to get to anything serious. Although not entirely analogous, skilling up into say a Battle Cruiser or a Covetor (mining barge) would be like hitting level 80 in WoW. If I had started leveling to 80 in WoW on February 16th when I started my two EVE characters I would have reach 80 already. Yet in Eve I'm probably around "level 40" right now. Unlike in WoW, you can actually sit in a station and skill up in EVE. You would only have to log in to start up new skills when you completed whatever you were formerly working on completed.
The only hitch with offline training in EVE is that the books cost money. As do the ships you eventually want to fly. So you either need to have a rich friend fund your laziness, or you need to do something in the days and weeks to earn money for that training and those ships. Which is why I decided to go the mining route initially, as well as run the odd mission here and there to break up the monotony. I've got all the money I need for my miner already. So I just need to wait out the next 15-16 days till I can fully fit the Retriever I'm working toward. I won't even get into the 110 days its going to take my hauler to train and fit the Orca he's working on right now.