The Creepy Lady in the Coffee Shop

Writing is a solitary pursuit. Well, it is if you don’t count the voices in our heads. ;)

Even though I now have my home office back in which to write, the truth is, I’m sometimes better off working in my local coffee shop. There’s a couple of reasons for this: first, the fact that there’s no Internet access there (well, there is, but I refuse to pay for it!) and therefore I’m less to be distracted; and second, as I’m a bit of an introvert to begin with, it would be all too easy to become a complete hermit. Getting out amongst real, living people a few times a week does me good from a social perspective…and from a writer’s one, too.

Because honestly? Some days I do as much people-watching as I do writing. Parents with children, old friends, business colleagues…the coffee shop is a gathering place for a multitude of people whose conversations I overhear — accidentally, of course (ahem) — become fodder for future stories and scenes and whose mannerisms or dress-choices may well flesh out a new character.

Of course, I have to be very circumspect or else my accidental eavesdropping  can  make other patrons regard me with suspicion. More than one eyebrow has been raised in my direction when my mind drifts away from the need for covertness and I forget that staring is rude. And I’m fairly certain that more than one fellow customer has labelled the lady in the corner as being downright creepy. Oops.

So the next time you see someone sitting in the corner of a coffee shop who seems to be paying an inordinate amount of attention to the goings-on around her/him, remember there’s a possibility s/he isn’t necessarily a social misfit (or a stalker!) but rather a writer looking for a little inspiration. But you may still want to lower your voice. ;)

(Adapted from a post that first appeared on Dark Central Station)



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4 responses to “The Creepy Lady in the Coffee Shop”

  1. miki Avatar

    i understand so well. And in a way we can thanks them since they give you inspiration and concentration you need to write us good books^^

    1. lindapoitevin Avatar

      That’s my reasoning, too! 😀

  2. D. D. Syrdal Avatar

    I’m like you, a recluse at heart. I need to get out more. I’m such a cheapskate though, cheaper to stay home, so there’s my excuse 😉

    1. lindapoitevin Avatar

      Yeah, it’s definitely cheaper to stay home…I’m limiting my coffee shop mornings to one a week now for just that reason. 🙂

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