There is some secret connection between writing and coffee shops because many people enjoy it and it’s not just some kind of silly trend since it has been done throughout history by various writers.
It has been a while since the last time I have been writing at Starbucks but this morning, the moment I’ve got there, got my coffee, sat down and opened my laptop, I remembered how much I enjoy writing at coffee shops.
It feels like going to work
Beginner writers usually get carried away with the muse and the poetry of the profession. They wait for some secret force to drag them from their couches and put their butts into the chair; they fail to see that writing is a job like any other. If you want to be a writer you must show up every day.
Simply relocating yourself to a different place will give you a sense of getting to work. This is especially true if you already have a job and you already have that routine of going somewhere to do your job, while fun and leisure happens at some other places. Even if you’ve never had an office job, it will be easier for you to trick your brain to dedicate a certain amount of time for writing only.
It doesn’t have to be Starbucks but getting an expensive cup of coffee will make your determination stronger. You need to tell yourself that you are going to spend $5 or more on a cup of coffee to be able to write in peace and get the best from your day and if you go there and fail to write you will be wasting your money.
It’s like going to the gym instead of buying your own exercise equipment. If you buy it will serve as an ugly decoration of your apartment because you will be sitting on your couch and trying to persuade yourself that you are going to work out later but if you show up at the gym you won’t sit on a bench press and browse through your Facebook feed because you came there to exercise.
Another thing which is included in the coffee price is the atmosphere, the murmur of the people, soft music, usually without any lyrics, the smell of coffee, well light room, comfortable chairs, and a clean table.
Although there are people who are talking, they are practically white noise because none of them will be talking to you. Even in China, where people occasionally like to interrupt you and take pictures with you or just chat, when they see you working on your laptop, they won’t bother you because they respect the fact that you came here to work and you’re busy.
On the other hand, someone trying to talk to you at home or at the office during the lunch break is a distraction which will happen no matter how many times you point out that you’re working.
Whenever I was living in a small apartment I couldn’t write. The closer I am to the wall the less creative I can be.
Cubicles and windowless rooms are my biggest constraints when it comes to the working environment. I feel like being closed in a box and all I can think of is how to escape.
While I’m sitting in a large coffee shop with lots of windows and space around me, my mind feels less stressed and I can relax more easily and let my creative juices flow.
It’s never the same, even if you go to the same coffee shop and sit at the same spot there are always going to be different people.
Having a routine in writing is important but a variety of options and environments is also important, at least for me.
In coffee shops, changes happen easily. I can sit at a different spot, order a different beverage, I can even go to a different coffee shop and I don’t get that dull feeling that I’m going to sit on the same chair, the same desk, next to the same people, have the same small talk before I jump into work.