John Scalzi says that you’re not fooling anyone when you take your laptop to a coffee shop, and insofar as taking your laptop to a coffee-shop to write in order to get laid is a fool’s endeavour, he’s not wrong. (I do recommend the book – it’s fun, informative, and a steal at $6)
But coffee shops aren’t a bad place to write, all the same. My NaNoWriMo group meets throughout the year at the Milton Coffee Club, where they are extremely nice to us and let us take up half the back area and all the powerpoints for most of November and sit there for eight hours taking up tables and making noise. They even donate prizes for our November competitions, which is just lovely of them. But even if you don’t have a close personal relationship with the staff, a coffee-shop can be a good place to write. They often have power-points, they supply caffeine and meals, and if you scout around a bit for a place with comfy seats, you’re good to go.
I personally like writing in the library, though I can’t do that as often now that I have a small child. But I used to go there a lot – again, they have free power, air-conditioning, comfy seats, and reference books galore. You can’t get coffee there, but it’s still pretty nice.
Writing on the train is another favourite. I used to get a lot of work done on the train going to and from work, when I was working. It’s a pre-blocked period of time in which your range of available activities is pretty limited, so if you do get public transport to work – especially if you travel in off-peak times when trains and buses aren’t so crowded – it can be a great time to churn out some words with few interruptions.
Parks can be nice, if weather permits, but the seating isn’t as comfortable, there’s more bugs, there’s no power, and nobody is going to bring you a vanilla latte. You can bring your own, of course.
Where do you write, if not at home?