Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Good Coffee is Pure Writing Juice

Finally, a writing getaway. What is it about travel and writing? I think it’s the chance to see something new, something unexpected, that helps to free up the word clog in our brains. Or, at least, in my brain. You turn a corner down a street, and there’s a brand new coffee house. Or diner.

I needed this, as my original plan for this past week was to make a pilgrimage to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and tour the battlefield. I wanted to get a feel for the battle, incorporate it into a huge conflict in my novel I’m trying to wrap up. The trip didn’t happen, I still needed a getaway, and a chance to write, so Wendy and I hit the road in search of writing havens. We found ‘em.

Coffee shops are great for writing, especially if you have easy access to an outlet for your electronic stuff. I have to use my laptop. I can write in my notebook, but if the ideas really get rollin’, I can’t read what I’ve written.

One thing I like is a quiet environment. Or if there’s music, it has to be in the background. People talking around me is fine, but if there’s too much commotion, I can’t focus.

Anyway, we worked for a few hours at a place called Ugly Mugz (http://www.uglymugzcoffee.com/), in Somerset, Kentucky. It was ideal. Great coffee. I don’t remember the blend, just that it was a dark roast. Only problem we had was with the chairs. Hard, wooden things. Wendy’s had a back, but mine didn’t. After a few hours of sitting there, we couldn’t walk. Also, another thing to keep in mind if you’re going to plan an extended session at a coffee shop, is you need to switch off the caffeine after a while. It did have the advantage that we could see more than just the visible light spectrum and vibrate our way through solid objects.

Restaurants and diners are good sometimes to write in, but you need to remember that the servers work for tips, so it’s not fair to tie up a table too long.

The best time, I’ve found, for a good writing session, is morning. That’s when my neurons seem to work best. Plus, I can make three cups of Joe last till at least lunch time.

Well, the writing juices are flowing again, and I’ve gotten a few blog posts out of our latest trip. Now, back to the edits. As far as my battle scene, I’ll study up on that part of the war online. Good thing about research online (as long as it’s a reliable source) is I can do it at a coffee shop. I’m thinking a cup of Sumatran.

Keep writing, friends.

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