Writing and Coffee Shops
Firstly, writing at home is filled with potential distractions. At least, that’s what I’ve noticed for myself. There’s the TV. There’s the internet. There’s a pile of laundry needing to go into the machine. Now, I know I can multitask and juggle, but I decided to actually leave the house to give my writing my full attention. Oh, and I go to a coffee shop that purposely doesn’t have WiFi. I know, right? A coffee shop without WiFi? How archaic! But, yes, no WiFi means no distractions. My writing gets jealous when I don’t give it my undivided attention.
Secondly, the atmosphere of a coffee shop allows me to concentrate. Granted, I have my earphones on, blasting the soundtrack appropriate for what I’m currently writing, but still. I’m not really a coffee drinker. I just love how relaxing the smell of freshly brewed coffee is. Plus, the more people hanging around, the better I manage tuning them out. Weird, but true.
Thirdly…okay, I’m stopping counting the reasons why. I just wanted to make a point.
I’ve discovered that many of the writers I know prefer writing in coffee shops, too. I can write anywhere—well, except my house unless I’m super focused—but there’s something about being in a coffee shop. The one I go to has great wooden chairs that never get uncomfortable even at the four hour mark of sitting down and typing away. And they have these tables at perfect height, so I’m sitting up straight and not straining anything. Don’t even get me started on the lighting. It’s the kind I love the most: soft yellow. My eyes love it since they’re particularly sensitive to harsh lighting. The yellow overhead acts as a perfect balance for the white of the computer screen. I end up forgetting I’m staring at a white sheet I need to fill up. It’s one of my phobias, you know. A white, empty sheet, taunting me. GaH!
Okay, enough scaring myself.
When I was writing Impulse, I managed to complete the whole manuscript at home, even with my mother vacuuming in the background, but this year seems totally different. I feel like I need to get away. Like to an office, when I still had one. It was a place I went to. Writing is by far not work for me, but I love going to the coffee shop with the idea that I will be spending a few hours there writing and nothing else. It’s like a date with someone you love. You go to a place where most likely no one knows you, so even in a sea of people you have some privacy. That’s me and my writing. We get to spend some quality time in a coffee shop that we can’t seem to have at home.
But maybe, when I get my groove back and I can fully concentrate, I might not need to leave the house. Right now, that’s not looking possible, so out of the house I go.
Day 18 = Chapter 21.