Coffeehouse: What Are You Doing?

JV Icon PenSeptember 5, 2017.   Imagine us all in a vintage coffeehouse, sprawled on sprung couches  around wobbly tables, our journals out, classic rock (country, punk, pop, fill in your own blank) pouring out of the stereo speakers mounted on the wall. We’re writing to the same prompt and then somebody calls time and we share. That’s Coffeehouse Community Writes!

Write for 7-10 minutes on the prompt below. Then post your write, or whatever you want of it, or a reflection (As I read this I notice– I’m aware of– I’m surprised by — etc.) or notes on the process or experience of writing it.

What are you doing? What are you working on? What occupies your days? If you use writing in your work–what are you doing? Who are your clients/students? How is it going?

Please share your write, your reflection or your process in the Comments section. Respond to each other and let’s see if we can create a community journal experience!


6 Responses to Coffeehouse: What Are You Doing?

  1. Carol Roberts September 8, 2017 at 12:16 pm #

    I missed Thursday’s guests–caring for baby Eli. But the good news is, I discovered last week YouTube and Baby Einstein for him–and poets like one of my favorites, Billy Collins! Cheered me up, especially something he said in an interview. A negative voice I hear goes something like this: you have no life; all you do is care for a baby and go back to your one room, etc etc The thing is, I like my almost solitary life. I have a library literally just around the corner; I read and I write. Not to mention my two new classes in writing their life stories. Billy said that he went into writing intentionally and he realized that it would be a solitary life. I like people, but I also like to write. Even if no one ever reads it, I have to write. I’m ok!

    • Kay Adams September 10, 2017 at 8:10 am #

      Carol, thanks so much for launching this topic. Does Eli have his own iPad yet? One of the moments I realized we’d entered a brave new world was when my niece’s daughter, Felicity, amused herself for hours during her uncle’s (very) long graduation ceremony swiping and poking at her iPad. She was 14 months old! In other news, your solitude sounds as if it suits you — I’m one (I’d guess most Journalversers are ones) who needs alone time to function.

      Write this one in Sharpie and tape it to your mirror: “I have to write. I’m ok!” (Also: Someone is reading you. We are!) As for Billy C, here’s a YouTube of him talking about/reading Litany and then here’s one of a 3-year-old who loves poetry reciting it. YouTube is a treasure trove of every poet you ever loved. It sounds like a time of discovery for you, Carol. Keep having fun!

      • Carol Roberts September 13, 2017 at 9:56 pm #

        Thanks for the good ideas, Kay. Two additions to the above: I have started another blog. It’s a great outlet and I don’t have to wonder whether I’ll ever be “published” cause there it is! Also, I just read this evening how important is the human touch, and babies count! Today when Eli couldn’t get to sleep on his own, I volunteered to rock and hold him. It’s a tough life but someone had to do it (I know, I know–trite–but true).

        • Kay Adams September 18, 2017 at 10:23 am #

          Yes, blogging is a wonderful way to self-publish! And Deborah Ross emphasizes how important human touch is for infant brain development, so it’s a win-win neurologically and emotionally.

  2. Carol Roberts October 11, 2017 at 1:54 pm #

    I think I’m getting ready to self-publish a “chapbook” of poems I’ve written. They are mostly memoir but also one or two other “persona” poems, as in speaking from the Woman at the Well’s point of view. (I realize that not everyone knows who that is, and I’ve included a few details.) Maybe they’ll just be Christmas gifts to family and friends, who knows, but I get such a kick out of writing them! Maybe it’s a gift to myself.
    (Sorry I missed October 8; I just plain forgot.)

    • Kay Adams October 16, 2017 at 11:12 am #

      This is so exciting, Carol! If you want to self-publish inexpensively (you’d need to find someone to design a cover and lay out your book pages so that it meets the printer’s specs) please go to and check out their “do-your-own-quote” thing. Chris Bradley is the owner and he’s been printing our self-published books for about 20 years. Great company, great value. As for Oct 8–you didn’t miss anything–I’ve pushed Sunday Salon back to next Sun, Oct 22, 4pm PT, 5pm MT, 6 pm CT, 7 pm ET. Details to follow in newsletter.

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