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Writing in a cafe: Freelancing perks

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I’m going to go edit in a cafe today. When I have paper edits to do, I like sitting and sipping my tea and working.

There’s a nice cafe that I went into yesterday for the first time (good chocolate cake!), I’ll give it a try today.

It’s conducive to serious thought with interesting interruptions because you see the locals and the people making coffee and handing out the sweets, and it’s peaceful and industrious at the same time.

And being a freelancer, I need that contact with people. I often get to know the staff and some of the regulars. And since I’m new to the area it will be a good way for me to feel more a part of it all.

If I really feel comfortable there, I’ll end up writing there too.

Writing requires a certain focus that I can only attain when I’m comfortable with my surroundings.

I’m sure if you’re a writer yourself or you’ve ever tried to write and been interrupted, you’ll know what I mean.

When I edit I can be interrupted and get back into the work, but when I’m writing if someone interrupts me I can lose the end of a sentence, that amazing turn of phrase or just my focus in general, and that can be VERY frustrating. Especially when I’m in character in my novel. I’m in the moment and living what my character is doing or saying or feeling, and then BAM! someone wanders into my fictional world and brings me back to reality.

How dare they!?

And they often get a vacant look, then an angry stare and a short, gruff reply.

The common phrase is, “Sorry to interrupt but…” Oh, yeah.

Or the, “Mom, what’s for dinner?” I heard that endlessly when I lived with my son. He’d get up in the morning, stumble down to my office and that’s the first thing he’d say. Boys and food!

And then they’d wonder why I’d take off every afternoon to my favourite cafe to work.

To get some peace, and to be somewhere where no one wanted anything from me.

Now that I’m living alone, I have a lot of both, but I still like getting out and the ambiance and social atmosphere of a good local cafe.

This one even puts out really comfortable chairs out front in the nice weather where the locals sit and chat and read. How wonderful is that. There’s often a luxurious relaxed quality about living in a village by the water.

When I lived in The Beaches in Toronto, it was the same thing. I loved living there.

So I’m going to head out after lunch and try working at the local cafe.

I’ll get some exercise, local flavour and some yummy tea and sweets. Hey, being a freelancer’s got to have its perks!

 

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From the series, Because I’m a woman and because I can! by Jacqueline Snider, writer and editor

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