Written by Lori Thiessen

Remember the television and screen writers’ strike a few weeks ago? We were stuck with endless reruns on the box, but did you also notice that your local coffee hang out might have been a little more empty then. Look around you. Finding your coffee shop a little more crowded these days? It may not just be spring causing coffee drinkers to pop out of the woodwork.

A friend of mine walked into her local East Vancouver java joint and she was miffed to see a sea of laptops awash over the whole place. She pointed this out to the barista. “The strike is over and so I think the writers are back”, the barista replied. If you are experiencing a similar lack of sitting space at your favorite caffeine connection, then you might be rubbing elbows with the “longing-to-be-rich-and-famous” writers of both screens.

Now you might expect to find a writer or two in Hollywood. There are some famous and favoured places to hang out and write the next big thing in movies, like Insomnia Cafe, Stir Crazy, Bourgeois Pig and Espresso Mi Cultura. Vancouver aka Hollywood North (at least until the US dollar took a dive) hosts a fair-sized clan of writers, would-be or otherwise. Just as each coffeehouse in 18th century London, England served a different community or industry (e.g. Lloyd’s Coffeehouse provided coffee and shipping information to local marine insurers), it seems reasonable that certain coffee shops in Vancouver are serving the needs of specific groups of folks.

If you are a local Vancouverite, you will immediately tag Commercial Drive as a place to find writers of all sorts not just tv and screen writers. As the epi-centre for all things alternative, Commercial Drive is the perfect place for the coffee to come with a hefty dash of creative inspiration. Kits (especially along 4th) would be a great place to bash out a script for something like “jPod” or other hip, edgy, ironic slice of sleek modern life. All it takes is a laptop, plenty of good coffee, time, a gift for storytelling as well as an insightful and incisive wit. Oh yeah, and a paying contract doesn’t hurt. Java don’t come cheap!

Q: Which local Vancouver places do you know or imagine to be good places for writers and why?

Thanks for dropping by and come again soon for another virtual cup and conversation!