I don’t drink coffee. I’ve never been able to tolerate the jitters even a mild jolt of caffeine gives me, but I love the smell of coffee and the rituals associated with it. That’s probably why most of characters are dependent on the stuff. My desire to be coffee-adjacent often has me sipping herbal tea at one of the many Starbucks of Fairfield County, my still-new-to-me home. I can write away from the distractions of home (kids, laundry, husband, usually in that order) and instead revel in the distraction of whirring espresso machines, overly loud Dave Brubeck on the sound system, and the conversations of other escapees from daily life. It’s amazing how productive I can be with just the smell of caffeine in the air, and a chocolate croissant in my hand.

Apparently, that’s how a lot of people are able to be productive because at my last visit, no less than a dozen other folks were in residence with their laptops as well. I always wonder what they’re working away on–probably not a sex scene set on a Hawaiian beach. But who knows?