What I’m Watching–Coffeehouse Edition

Happy Leap Day, everyone!!

I have been making a lot of changes to this site in the past few days, and I still have a few more on the way.  I am just finishing Kristen Lamb’s blogging class, and I am having fun with implementing everything I have learned.

One of the things I have been throwing around for quite some time now (since even before the class) was theme days.  I always struggle coming up with topics, so I thought having a theme to stick with would be helpful.  Unfortunately, I could never come up with a topic that I could write about week in and week out.

Through this class, I realized I was trying to be too specific in choosing topics.  For example, I had thought about a weekly review of what I was reading–but then what would I do if life got in the way and I didn’t have much reading time that week? Or if I read a book I really didn’t like, but didn’t want to call that out to the world?

This weekend, my awesome husband and I were chatting about the class, and he had a few ideas for me.  We discussed them, and but his ideas and mine together to come up with three themes that we think work well for me (and even fit with my awesome new logline, thanks to Kristen).

  1. Mix-up Mondays
    I really struggle with Monday posts, so I didn’t want to be too tied down with this one (plus, the alliteration was fun).  This will have a bit of everything–a monthly mashup of awesome blogs and websites, great YouTube videos, guest posts, interviews…basically anything that comes to mind.  Even better–they can easily be written and scheduled in advance! 🙂 No more Monday morning rush to write my blog post!!
  2. What I am Watching Wednesdays
    I’ll admit it–I can be a bit of a TV addict.  I have three DVRs in my house, for those days when there are 5 shows on at the same time that I want to record.  The nice thing is, even in the leaner months when there is very little on TV, I always have something to watch when the mood strikes! 🙂
    On the other hand, I don’t want to just write about what television shows I am watching. Here I will talk about anything that I see that strikes and interest –from television to movies, theatre, and people watching (one of my favorite things to watch).   I can even include books here, since I have to look at them in order to read them.  🙂
  3. Fun-in-the-Sun Fridays
    I have to admit, this one is my favorite.  I am a beach bum at heart. I love baseball.  I love sitting outside and reading.  Even driving is more fun with the sunroof open.  🙂 I am looking forward to sharing some of my favorite activities related to fun in the sun.
Of course, I can see some overlaps between the themes–people watching at the beach? Reading in the sun? 🙂 In that case, I will just pick one.  🙂
So, in the spirit of Wednesday, I figured I would share some of the interesting characters I observed at Starbuckslast week (who may or may not end up in one of my stories). 😉
I took my laptop to Starbucks for a few hours to write.  I am always amazed at how productive I can be away from the distractions of home.  Even my people watching didn’t seem to hinder my productivity.  :-)There were two people in particular that amused me.  The first was a lady who appeared to by my age (early- to mid-thirties).  She came in , talking loudly on her cell phone and sat that the table in front of mine.  At first I was wishing I had headphones to drown her out–until I heard what she was talking about.
She proceeded to have a very loud 25-minute conversation about how she hates rude people who sit and talk loudly on cell phones in public.  As she did this, she glared at the gentleman at the table next to me (who we’ll get to in a minute) who was having a quiet conversation on his phone (his table was closer to mine, yet I couldn’t hear what he was saying).
Finally, she went up to the counter and complained to the manager about how it was absurd that she allowed cell phone use in the restaurant, as it kept anyone else from getting any work done.  Pot calling the kettle black, anyone? She was the only one in there talking loudly enough to keep anyone from getting anything done.  I seriously kept waiting for a television crew to pop out, Candid Camerastyle.  🙂

The gentleman next to me (who would quietly answer his phone and take a message, haying he would call back or else step outside to talk) seemed like a perfectly nice guy.  Definitely a regular, he seemed to know a lot of the other customers.    He regularly would go sit down at other table and chat with people.  A few come to his table, and they exchanged phone numbers.

It was obvious he didn’t know these people well, as he had to ask for their last names before the could put them in his phone book.  With the first, the new friend had a German last name, and the guy commented on it, noting that his mom was 100% German.

With the next, the last name was Spanish.  Again, a comment was made about heritage, and the new friend said he was Ecuadorian, and the guy at the next table commented that his dad was 100% Ecuadorian.  The made the obligatory comments about it being a small world, and the new friend went on his way.

I thought it was an interesting coincidence, but didn’t think too much about it until the third new friend–Italian this time.  And guess what? Mom was suddenly 100% Italian.  Interesting…:-)

Now I know, there could have been step families in there, but it still gave me a laugh.  (More likely, I tend to think the conversation was more a way of the guy associating the new last name with the person. )

Have you seen any interesting people when you have been out and about lately?   For writers, does anyone else have a notebook of interesting characters they have seen out and about in real life?

Oh, and what do you think of the new logline and theme days?

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Susi Borath finds time to write between freelance marketing jobs, minor league baseball games, creating new cookie recipes, and juggling more laundry than any two people should be able to produce. You can find more about her at http://susiborath.com or follow @susiborath on Twitter.

9 thoughts on “What I’m Watching–Coffeehouse Edition

  1. I like the new look to go with the new log line. Very nice!
    Keeping a character notebook is a good idea. If I have a notebook for characters, it might make me more aware of paying attention to the details when I’m out and about. I like that. Thanks.

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  2. A while back I had gone into a MacDonalds to get lunch. It was lunchtimeon a weekday, so it was very crowded. I was standing in line and was getting up front. This woman way behind me starts elbowing her way through the crowd. She was very short, and had a black eye patch. Any time anyone protested that she was cutting in front of this, she insisted she was here first, in a very loud voice. I had ordered my food and was waiting. They put my tray down to fill it. The woman has managed to get an order in and grabs my tray. I said politely that was for my order, and she said, “I was here first.” Very unpleasant person.

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  3. Love the new look and the log line. Seems to suit you well. Whenever I am out and about, I tend to zero in on the people who seem most like the characters I am currently writing about in my WIP. I guess I always have them on the brain!

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  4. Interesting post. Starbucks (where I am now) is an amazing place to people watch.

    I wonder if others (you?) felt as I did that this friendly man made me really uncomfortable. It was a way to connect with others but to watch somebody lie so blatantly just gives me a sick feeling inside.

    Definitely a character to consider using but as a human being, Yuck!

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