Writers love coffee shops.
We like to watch people. We’re the type of people who note, and remember, specific details.
We notice if you look anxious. Don’t worry, they will show up.
We speculate on what number date you are on. We wonder what will come after date number three.
We listen to the rapid-fire conversation you are having with your mom or best friend.
We store this information for times when we are lacking in our own experiences.
We need our coffee.
We meant to go to sleep by 11, but we were probably up until 2 AM, because that’s when our best writing happens. It’s when we’re a little delirious, a little emotional, and a little crazy. There are countless nights when our lights are out, and our laptops shut down, but our minds keep running. We can’t allow sleep to steal a crucial paragraph or even a perfectly formed sentence. We must write. Lights back on. Laptops reopened.
So the next morning, a coffee or two is necessary. One sugar, a little cream. For here, please. We like the eco-friendly ceramic cups. Better for the environment, and better to Instagram.
We probably have a favorite table. It’s spacious enough for our computer and a notebook. An outlet is within reach. The table is preferably against a wall. We can’t write if we’re worried that our battery might die or if we have onlookers on either side of us.
We can see the door. We look up when someone enters, and when someone exits.
We’re there for hours.
We can be anxious people. That’s what happens when you’re an over-thinker. A familiar coffee shop is a low-pressure environment. We know what drink we will order. We know where to order it, and where to pick it up. If we’re truly regulars, the baristas know us. It’s home.
We write in places where we are comfortable.
But what happens when we’re forced to relocate? It is inevitable that at some point, we will unplug our chargers and clear the clutter that has built up since 9 that morning. Maybe the coffee shop is closing for the night, or we have an obligation elsewhere (doubtful, as we schedule all meetings or lunch dates here).
Or maybe we have to leave for good; it’s our time to move on.
What happens then?
We find a new coffee shop in a new city, or even a new country. We find a comfortable table, smile shyly at the strangers that will soon become familiar faces, and we write once again.