The Lincoln Conspiracy is a hell of a good read. It’s an exciting thriller full of believable characters and absorbing history, and the end result is a page-turning blend of research and imagination.
Maybe it was the result of hating my first post-college job in advertising, but for most of my adult life, my goal has been to avoid working in an office. So, when I sold my first book, I thought I was pretty well set for working at home. And for a while I was. I would wake up at six every day, have a leisurely breakfast while I read the paper, and then get to work. By noon, I’d put in a good writing day, and I felt incredibly productive. It was great. No commute. All the comforts of home. I didn’t have to feel guilty about leaving my cat.
Somewhere along the way, however, I began to find working at home a bit of a distraction. Somewhat predictably, things began to change after our first child was born, but even after she was leaving the house every day for preschool, I still couldn’t focus in the house the way I used to. That’s when I started hitting the coffee shops.
I’ve patronized a number of them over the years, leaving a place that works usually only when it closes down, as coffee shops in San Antonio used to have a nasty habit of doing. Then I found a place I loved – great coffee, cubicles designed specifically for people who are there to work, and a staff of baristas with whom I’ve become friends (I meet with several of them for occasional Doctor Who-watching marathons).
For the past five years my schedule has gone something like this: Monday through Friday, after the morning school drop-off, I hit the coffee shop where my favorite cubicle is reserved for me (the rewards of being a regular customer, I guess). I set up my computer, get my coffee, and get to it. I spend the mornings there, and then leave to have lunch at home. Afternoons I usually spend working at home, and those are the hours I tend to do research and work on comic book scripts, short stories, or other non-novelistic projects.