Friday, March 23, 2007

A new place to write?

Unless it's a teaching or meeting day, I usually work at home. When I read profgrrrl and other bloggers talking about all the work they get done at the local coffee shop (indy or Starbucks), though, I start thinking, "Yeah, that's the way to go! I ought to go to Starbucks, too." Then I remember three things:

(1) I don't drink coffee.
(2) I don't like pastries.
(3) Even if I liked both, part of the point of getting out of the house when writing is to avoid the occasion of sinfood. It's the "hmm--I'm stuck on a paragraph; let's see what's in the fridge" syndrome, the one that says there are no calories in food eaten while procrastinating.

So the coffee shop just doesn't feel comfortable to me. Libraries, however, are a different matter; whatever they pump into the atmosphere in those places makes me stop the nonsense and get to work. At Former U, I used to work in the library all the time, but at Present U, I'm too far away to make library work feasible when there's no actual need to be there.

But Local Regional U has a spanking new library, all light wood and tall windows and big tables to spread out work. It has peace and quiet and wireless. After working down there for a few hours today, I couldn't tell if they were putting the magic writing discipline atmosphere in the ventilation system, but I'm sure going to give it a try.


Professor Zero said...

My ex-chair says that all assistant professors work at home. They have not yet learned to work in offices, they were recently persons who did not have quiet offices, and who cares
anyway ... at the end of the day, either the work is done or it is not,
and who cares where it took place?

My undergraduate roommate wrote A papers in discotheques. I have not yet achieved this.

undine said...

That's an interesting point--and yes, exactly: if the works is done, who cares where it's done? When I was an assistant professor, I used to work in my office more, but my office is now too far away. I mostly do work at home, but sometimes just going to a different place wakes up my brain, or seems to.

Anonymous said...

I long to be the kind of person who works in coffee shop -- maybe it seems more romantic to me? -- but I too hate coffee, and most coffee shops don't serve diet Coke, which is what I really like to drink when I'm writing. So I'm stuck at home with my computer.

undine said...

That's just it, what now--it seems more exciting to work somewhere else. IMHO, Starbucks could make even more indecent heaps of money if they'd just stock diet Coke (or diet Pepsi) for those of us who don't know what a mocha latte is and wouldn't care if we never found out.

undine said...

P. S. I suspect, though, that they won't sell diet Coke until they figure out a way to put foam on top.