Thank heavens for my coffeehouse. (WIRED in South St. Louis County). The truth of the matter is that I have trouble organizing breakfast. And right now I’m in the middle of a trilogy that is taxing a brain already burdened with ADD, family, aged parents, publishing business, travel planning, all the little business a household demands like calling to see why your electric bill just shot up(a call that ends up taking most of the morning)and, oh, did I mention ADD?

But at my coffeehouse, nobody calls me. Few people have my cell number, and those who do know better than to call to chat. I do not chat on my cell. I spend as much time as I can getting away from the phone. I’m sitting here now at a table next to a bright wall, across from a fire in a cozy fireplace, with soft music playing in the background. I know all the staff, many of the frequent attendees like myself, and I’ve built myself a little routine.

I come in, get my coffee, lunch, carrot bread, whatever, and drag all my paraphenalia over to a table, or if I’m lucky, the back room when it’s not in use where I can be completely alone. I borrow the funnies from the community paper so I can do the New York Times crossword puzzle. I check email and news on line. I make any travel arrangements I need to (I am the queen of internet travel), do spot research I need, and update my facebook if I have the mental focus.

And then, when I’m in the proper mindset, I begin work on whatever book I’m tackling. Last week it was PR for BARELY A LADY, the first book in my historical DRAKE’S RAKES trilogy; the line edits for NEVER A GENTLEMAN, the second book, and the writing of the third book, EVER THE TEMPTRESS. This week will be the revisions for NEVER A GENTLEMAN, the second book.

If you’re confused, think how I feel. The good point is that I can at least take some of the distraction out of the equation. The only TV here is turned to CNN. I can’t accidentally trip over the daylong TCM tribute to Ronald Colman or House Hunters International. Nobody can find me on the phone. There is no bed or couch to lure me for a nap, or plethora of little chores that can quite successfully keep me from work for an entire day. Here I don’t have a choice.

So here I am. I just wish I didn’t have to leave before it closed. I mean, I’ll just have to go home and make dinner and go through the mail and remember all the things I should have done while I was enjoying myself at the coffeehouse. Oh, for an escape…

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