I hear their voices ever clearer when we go to where the coffee flows and music plays low and the rent is high, but it tastes good.

I danced when my Starbucks Gold Card arrived in the mail. Yes, it meant that I had spent enough money on Chai Teas and Skinny Vanilla Lattes to be a card carrier. Some, no, plenty, would say that I wasted much money to have earned this card. Maybe in the beginning I did, as I raked in the points for buying overpriced coffees to boost my mood or spoil my daughters.

But lately and more frequently, the drinks are a perk of renting a space to write for an hour or so. For $3.94 I get a comfy chair and small table near a plug and a window with a cup of joe that usually tastes worth every cent.

I need my space

Kudos to Starbucks for providing me some space, but also to Panera Bread and Einstein Bagels this month as I am taking part in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). I do most of my writing at home, such as here now still in my pajamas propped up in bed while the dog snores at my feet, or at the kitchen table with crumbs in my keyboard, or in the living room recliner, or downstairs in the family room during a bad Broncos game.

But occasionally, when the plot needs thickening and the characters need wakening, a change of scenery is what the creator needs. So I whip out my gold card or blue debit card and pay the rent to sit and sip among the sounds of a coffee shop. I don’t know what it is that sparks the creativity in these places and I don’t need to know. Why take time to analyze the whys and risk drowning out the voices of my characters in mid-sentence?

Speaking fees

They speak to me amidst the strangers ordering cappuccinos, lattes and whole grain bagels. They come to life on the pages to cause wonder and wreak havoc and I wouldn’t have it any other way, so I willingly pay the fee.

With one week left of NaNoWriMo, I am right on track for my personal writing goal. It has been a phenomenal experience to discover that I can make time to write a thousand plus words every day. Even more so, it is amazing to watch a story, my story, unfold and come together right before my very eyes. I think I know how it will end, but only in a vague, cloudy, distant sense. That old lady on the porch who appeared on the page yesterday came out of nowhere, but she may actually have a major role in wrapping up the mystery.

To see how she’ll fit in, I may have to sit in a Starbucks later and hear their voices (hers and some of the others) ever clearer when we (the old lady and I and maybe one of my daughters) go to where the coffee flows and music plays low and the rent is high, but it tastes good.