Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Behind or rather Beside the Writing by Erin Nicholas

Obviously, as a romance writer, I typically blog about writing… my writing, other people’s writing… but, there are things that go into my writing that aren’t just fingers on the keyboard, character sketches, and plot notes. There are some important things that make my writing work.

My imagination? No. My impressive vocabulary? Nah. My incredible grasp of story structure and character development? Nope.

Coffee. Definitely.

I always have a cup sitting beside my computer as I write. I love it. I love how it smells, how it looks (coffee mixed with just the right amount of cream is my favorite shade of brown), how it tastes.

Now, my father would tell you that what I drink shouldn’t be called coffee. It’s true that I like to add things in. Cream of many flavors (hazelnut is one of my faves), chocolate, caramel, cinnamon… not all at once but… though come to think of it maybe I should try that!

I grew up in a coffee house. Not a coffeehouse, as in Central Perk from Friends, but a house where nobody above the age of eighteen left the house without visiting the coffee pot at least once. But my mom and dad both drink it straight up, black, full caffeine, no watering it down.

I got my love of sweet coffee from my grandpa. Grandpa always stirred some sugar into his and he didn’t mind pouring a bit into our little teacups. I believed for years that coffee was naturally sweet! (imagine my surprise when I tried to sneak a sip of my mom’s one day… )

Well, now I’ve grown up and moved beyond just a teaspoon of sugar. Bring on the whipped cream, the marshmallows, the white chocolate! I’ve really tried to cut back due to the caffeine and calories, but cutting back and cutting out entirely are different things! Coffee is an essential part of my writing process.

So, rather than the writing, let’s talk coffee. Tell me about yours. Do you love it? Hate it? If you hate it, what do you drink instead? If you love it, is it straight up, loaded with goodies, somewhere in between? If you’re a soul-sister (or brother) and you like it loaded up like me, what’s the best you’ve ever had?
~Erin


Erin Nicholas has been reading and writing romantic fiction since her mother gave her a romance novel in high school and she discovered happily-ever-after suddenly went a little beyond glass slippers and fairy godmothers! She lives in the Midwest with her husband who only wants to read the sex scenes in her books, her kids who will never read the sex scenes in her books, and family and friends who say they’re shocked by the sex scenes in her books (yeah, right!).
For more information about Erin and her books, visit:
www.ErinNicholas.com
http://ninenaughtynovelists.blogspot.com/
http://samhainpublishing.com/authors/erin-nicholas

72 comments:

Jane said...

I love coffee. I like it with milk and sugar, I can't drink it black. I'm not a huge fan of flavored coffees.

Aly said...

Oh I hate coffee. I like the smell of whole coffee beans but don't give me grounds or brewed b/c that smell makes me ill!

I am a huge tea drinker. I don't like the fruity ones so I stick to things like Earl Grey, English Breakfast, etc.

s7anna said...

I looove coffee BUT I can't drink it as often as I would like since I get the worst migraines EVER after drinking a cup. :( very sad I know... I adore lattes, cappuccinos, mochaccinos and frappaccinos (errmm spelling is probably wrong) I love sweet sugared black coffee too...maybe some vanilla in it. Total YUM!

hugs,
Anna
s7anna@yahoo.ca

nmulder81 said...

I LIVE ON COFFEE. Im pretty sure I would have died of exhaustion long ago without it. My favorite creamer currently is called "buttercream icing"...and yes, it does taste like it. Made by "International", check it out, you will love...promise!
The guys at the local gas station know my name and they know I head straight for the biggest cup they carry. I will NOT drink it black...and regular creamer is just slightly above that...tolerable. Must be flavored...period... Good to know my love is shared!

Katy M said...

I love a bold staight black coffee the stronger the better. Kaffe? Espresso? Even better! Sadly, I can't really drink coffee anymore because I have chronic insomnia. I'm okay most of the time except when I smell it...

Instead I drink Roobios, a red, naturally decaffeinated tea, or decaf Chai latte hot or frozen (it has tons of sugar though). In the summer, I drink a lot of decaf green & black tea with lemon.

Katy M said...

I meant to say ICED tea in the summer. And when I smell coffee I get major cravings.

Lillie said...

I don't like coffee at all. Or any hot beverage, come to think of it. I drink sweet iced tea all day long.

Heather D said...

I love my coffee! I have been drinking it for as long as I can remember. One of the only memories of my biological father was stirring his coffee, he took with both milk and sugar. My mother never drinks it. My dad (stepdad but divorced from mom) drinks it with flavored creamer and a packet of Sweet N Low. Me definitely taking after my dad! I love flavored creamers--Caramel something, but I have gone back to the plain powdered creamer and only one spoon of sugar.

My special treat is Starbucks Caramel White Choco Mocha.

What I don't get it is that neither one of my kids have a taste for it. Not that I want my 7yr old drinking it, but my high schooler says it makes her sick, but loves the smell.

Stephanie said...

Coffee was never around in my house so I never took up the taste or habit. And I have terrible migrains so it wouldn't be that good for me anyway.

But, if you were talkin chocolate you'd be speakin with a conisour!! My Must-Have is Dove Dark Chocolate.

peggy said...

I have to have my coffee in the morning befor i can get awake,just black no cream or sugar

runner10 said...

I haven't started drinking coffee. I am a Diet Coke addict. I can't start my day without it.

CherylS22 said...

I love coffee, especially flavored coffee. I like a vanilla or mocha coffee & I add chocolate milk to it. I think the flavors of coffee & chocolate go together nicely!

Leigh D'Ansey said...

I LOVE coffee. At home I take it with skim milk and no sugar. When I go out, I add stuff (because that doesn't count!). Nothing smells better than fresh ground beans.

I can no longer avoid my mother reading the sex scenes in my writing. My debut novel is soon to be released and I'd be roasted slowly over hot embers if Mum isn't allowed to read it. I don't want to be roasted over hot embers - it's okay for coffee, but not me!

WK said...

I'm just not a coffee drinker. I will once in a blue moon drink a cup but not often, I much prefer Hot Coco.

hugs,
WendyK

Diana_Duncan said...

Oh... a subject near and dear to my heart. I can't get thru a day w/o my coffee!

My newest love is Starbuck's Dark Cherry Mochas! They taste like black forest cake or chocolate-covered cherries (take your pick)!

My second favorite is peppermint mochas. And Starbucks will sell you the flavored syrup, so I make my own at home to save money. ;)

suehussein said...

I adore coffee too, the smell is one of the best on the planet. I luv all the Starbucks fancy coffees and even a McDonalds frap is good. Tim Horton has an Iced Cap that we love here in the summer. At home we only drink Turkish coffee and my limit is 3 demitasse cups a day. I start every day with a cup and a half or I can't start my day!! Thanks, Sue

trudy said...

I don't drink much coffee. To me it is something to be drunk when it is really cold and since I live in Florida it tends not to get cold that often. When I do I like it sweet tasting. Be it flavored coffee or flavored cream I am not picky and I tend to put a ton of sugar in it.

Rebecca Ringler said...

LOL, Erin! - I love this blog. I'm glad you have a special relationship w/ your coffee the way I do. I love to go to the convenience store w/ my refill mug & get a cup of half cappuccino & half coffee. A cake donut goes nicely, too. I take my refill mug in each time & I pay less than a dollar that way. I am really getting a good laugh out of this because my fat-burning coffee just came yest & I am on my 10-day trial. I like the taste of it & it's what I will be drinking from now on if I'm happy w/ it.

LM's Drama Queen said...

Mmmmm...this post has me craving a cup of coffee! Since I'm preggers at the moment, I can't indulge myself but let me tell you, I sure do wish I could! And for all you readers who drink your coffee straight, you are some of the bravest people I know:) I think I just might love my sweet tooth a little too much. LOL. This was such a fun topic, Erin! Enjoy your hazelnut coffee for me!

XOX
~*DQ*~

Terri said...

I only drink coffee when its cold. So that's not very often since at live at the beach. But when I do drink coffee I like lots of sugar and cream. Especially with Irish Cream in it. Otherwise its Pepsi or sweet tea.

erahime said...

I'm a coffee person. However, I can't drink it straight up. It just taste BLAH to me. I load it w/ goodies, like cream and sugar/sweetener. My dentist said sweetener, not sugar, 'cuz it's better for my teeth. Yet I prefer sugar. If I don't drink it regularly, sugar, but if I do drink it regularly, then sweetener. As for cream, plain or w/ flavor. Whatever is available works for me.

I adore Starbucks' white choc. mocha. I have it w/ whipped cream and it just taste...divine.

flchen1 said...

I love the smell of coffee but haven't gotten much into drinking it. I do love coffee ice cream though! Mmmm...

Joni said...

Oh how fun, talking about coffee in place of heroes. I'm very big on this stuff too, although I avoided Starbucks for years until my daughter(gasp) began driving and started stopping there...of course that was also when she was living off her father's and my income...now she rarely goes there..hahaha. I'd only drank coffee with the good ol cream and sugar (replaced with Splenda later) until I sipped my first Starbucks white chocolate mocha expresso then graduated to their seasonal Pumpkin Spice coffee - no cold or decaf frappies for me. Since discovering WaWa convenient/gas store opened and started serving Mocha Cinnamon and English Toffee coffees, 1/2 the price of Starbucks, I go there quite frequently when I'm out and about...otherwise I stick to Maxwell House Brand with Splenda and Land O Lakes Half & half...richer than plain 1/2 and 1/2. I avoid the French Vanilla and Hazlenut flavors because I gots to have my chocolate and/or toffee in it instead!

icia said...

To be honest I'm not much of a coffee drinker. I have drinked it in the past (I like it sweet with milk and even a bit of chocolate in it.
Now I can tell you I'm a tea drinker love can't seeem to get through the day with out at least 2 very big cups of it. The part of that is I'm not suppose to be drinking it at all. I have this condistion call GERD but do I let it bother me, no. I just take more medication, talk about addiction!
icia

Zina Lynch said...

I hate it, love sweetened iced tea though.I also like herbal teas iced like tension tamer and sleepy time.

goshnsqurrl63 said...

java,java,jave...Love it....cant live without it! Even love the coffee beans covered with chocolate! Thank You for blogging about it! think i'll go and get some more of it! ;-D
~Hollie~

Lisa F. said...

Don't drink coffee at all, but I start every day with a Dt. Dr. Pepper. That's my caffeine to get me going, then it's water or decaf sweet tea the rest of the day.

Deb830 said...

Hi Erin -

I love coffee, tea and hot chocolate too. I love the smell and taste. I am not an addict and only drink them occasionally, usually when its cold out or I first thing in the morning. I love my Keurig and the k-cups. I drink my coffee with cream and sugar. My new thing is the instant 3-in-1 coffees. My boss brought some back from Manila and they are great when you don't want to brew a whole pot or away on vacation.

deb ;0)

Andrea Becraft said...

I don't really drink coffee. I have a cappacino every once in awhile if I need a pick me up of energy which it does seeings hoe I hardly ever have caffene in my system.

I've been drinking mostly water trying to loose some weight.

Natasha A. said...

I do really enjoy coffee! Kind of! I am more of a cream and sugar girl with some coffee :)
I am however cutting down. It was making me sick.
So now I can have 2 a week and I am now drinking decaf :(

LDee said...

Thanks for a fun blog. I grew up in a coffee house too. I started drinking it with sugar because my dad took it that way. I can't remember when I didn't drink coffee. If it's true it stunts growth it didn't effect me. When I grew up I started drinking it black and in my everyday all the time drinking I still take it that way but I love it with flavored creamers.

I'm not sure I could write without a cup by my elbow. And, I know I don't want to have to try.

Lavada

Leni said...

I drink my coffee loaded with milk, chocolate, and sometimes creamer. Can't drink it black.

Nichole said...

I'm an occasional coffee drinker but I have to doctor it up with milk and sugar or creamer and I love fraps, caps, lattes and all the other high cal/carb concoctions.

Toni said...

Sorry but I don't like the taste of coffee but you can give me a good cup of Hot Cocoa anytime with any flavor but coffee. But I am glad that you enjoy yours.

Toni

Erin Nicholas said...

See coffee is one of those topics that everyone has an opinion on-- love or hate! :)
I've gotten some great ideas for new tries too... thanks!!!
I tried to go without caffeine one day-- ONE. DAY. Thought I was gonna die! Like going a day without writing! lol
Thanks for weighing in everyone! Oh, and for you lovers-- try sweetened condensed milk in your coffee... YUM!!
Erin

Marilyn Shoemaker said...

I love a fresh "cuppa" every morning along with an hour of reading a romance.

Liz said...

I am a totally coffeeolic, and can't survive without it. Usually with a little sugar sometimes with kaluha, iced, in cappuchinos, latte, frozen. Chocolate covered coffee beans, preey much if it has coffee in the name I drink it or eat it

Lil said...

I love coffee and take it depending upon my mood. Often, it is just strong and black during the morning but there are occasions where nothing will do but the rich chocolate and coffee drink known to all as a Mocha...and with whipped cream, at that.

Sherry said...

I love coffee I drink it all of the time. Most of the time I drink it black but every once in a while I want it with cream and sugar. Whether I drink it black or with something in it I want it strong. But I can't stand flavored coffee it just not the same to me.

sstrode@scrtc.com

sonya said...

I LOVE coffee. I can't fuction with out it. I take mine with sugar and cream. My favortie is Rassberry Mocha Lattes from Starbucks

Joni said...

Forgot to mention that caffeine has caused me to have cysts in me twins, although benign. I told the doctor that if I had to quit drinking my coffee, he was going to die before I do because I'd have to kill him! :-)

Lucy Monroe said...

LOL Erin...your blog delighted me! Thank you for bringing some fun and great discussion to the RAH Conf. :)

Cathy M said...

My morning coffee has a splash of chocolate milk and french vanilla creamer. And I've been known to enjoy a Mocha Frappacino now and again too,with whipped cream, of course.

Jami Davenport said...

Erin,

Since I live near Seattle and am a born-n-bred Northwesterner, I love my coffee. I admit to being very picky about what coffee I drink. In a restaurant, I'll sniff it first, I can tell by how it smells if it's something I want to drink. I don't like flavoring messing with my coffee, but I do put in a little sugar. I couldn't start the day without a cup of Starbucks.

red said...

I hate coffee- don't drink it at all and I can't even stand the smell of it. During the winter I drink tea in the morning and when it gets to hot for tea I switch to milk or chocolate milk.

It's so funny that in my family my mom and both my sisters are huge coffee lover and have to drink it at least twice a day and me and my dad just can't stand coffee.

Moran

Nancy G said...

I love coffee-now. I never drank it until I was in my late twenties/early thirties. I was working at a retail store, we were having a Super Bowl sale really early, and I had to open up at like six in the morning. It was cold that day, and starting to sleet and snow, and the boss was running late. I ran to the dier across the street, they were out of hot chocolate, no tea either-I was so cold I bought coffee, and it was the best I ever had. Now, I need a cup to start my day-with cream and sugar-especially french vanilla or caramel cream.

Linda Henderson said...

I don't like regular coffee, I usually drink the flavored ones. I love the International Foods ones. I also enjoy mocha's and latte's and sometimes a cappuccino.

seriousreader at live dot com

donnas said...

I am not a coffee drinker. I love the smell, but I never grew accustomed to the taste. I am a serious Diet Coke drinker though. And that is what I have in the morning instead.

Armenia said...

I enjoy coffee and love it with cream. Although I love various roasted and flavored beans, I'm not too much on fancy concoctions.

Beth said...

I love the smell of coffee, can't stand the taste.
I usually drink chocolate milk, fruit juice(non-citrus), water or hot cocoa. Rarely I'll have a 7UP or Sprite, but none of the colored sodas.
Don't drink tea, beer or wine either. But do occasionally(maybe four or five times a year for certain holidays)drink wine coolers, Screwdrivers or Pina Coladas.

Sue A. said...

Coffee is one of the few things I drink regularly. I like it hot or cold, but it must have sugar in it, unless it's a latte. I need to add milk, lots of it, I can't handle it straight.

booklover0226 said...

I tend to drink coffee more in the winter when I'm cold. I like the flavored creamers or adding instant hot chocolate to it.

I drink green tea every day and love it!

Thanks,
Tracey D

lindseye said...

Not a coffee drinker and only started drinking tea about 2 years ago. I tried coffee once when I was 7 mixed with lots of milk and sugar and found it so disgusting that I avoid mocha flavored anything.

Carol L. said...

I only have 2 cups in the early morning. Of course it's flavored with half and half and a little milk. I've been known to add whipped cream when I have it in the house. :)
Carol L.
Lucky4750@aol.com

Ina said...

*hiding* I drink no coffee - I can't stand the taste... but I love tea especially strawberrytea :)
greetings, Ina

Maria said...

Hey Erin- great post. I love love love coffee, I too grew up in a household where coffee was a staple of life. My grandma started me drinking coffee when I was six although she did water it down with milk and sugar, which I'm sure is why today I take it with cream and sugar. Have never been able to drink black coffee straight up. I pretty much love all of the coffee drinks at Starbucks and Seattle's Best and try to make my coffee at home as close to theirs as possible, I have flavored syrups, flavored creamers, a frother, chocolate and caramel syrup...Yep I'm an addict and proud of it

JanDgls said...

For me it's Dr. Pepper, usually. It's what I have 1st thing in the morning. BUT I do like coffee. Granted when I was younger I didn't touch the stuff. But now I get a Mocha (gotta love that coffee and chocolate combo) when I get to the coffehouse.

CrystalGB said...

I drink capuccino but not much of a fan of regular coffee.

Janet H said...

Hi Erin,
I love coffee. Dark roast with sugar, maybe a little cream. I remember drinking coffee as a little girl. My grandfather spoiled me and always let me drink it when no one else would. I would not want to start a day or an afternoon without it.

Dannyfiredragon said...

I drink neither coffee nor tea. Give me a Caramel Frappucino Cream or a hot chocolate and I am happy

Tamsyn said...

Never goes without a cup of coffee in the morning. I drink coffee all the time - either with sugar or milk, sometimes both! Love flavored coffee too.

Amanda said...

never cared for the test of coffee more a tea person

Jenna Bayley-Burke said...

I love tea - all kinds :) Peppermint especially.

But my Miele espresso machine is the secret to my success, hands down :D

etirv said...

Gave me bad withdrawals so stopped for a year but drinking a little again... black is how I like mine... but Starbucks cafe mocha is good... no low fat for me, though, not the same.

Raonaid Luckwell said...

Ehh, not into coffee which is strange since my mom, grandma and grandpa are coffee drinkers. I just never acquired the taste for the stuff.. Though I use to as a little girl enjoyed dipping my crackers into my grandma's

Rhea said...

I love coffee. I start my day off every day with a cup of coffee. For my morning coffee, it has to be black, no sugar.

But after work, on weekends, etc, I love flavored coffees. I am a card carrying Starbucks addict. My favorite is a Marble Mocha (white and dark chocolate). Yum!

Lois said...

Oh me, not a coffee fan. Tea as well; there I like iced tea, but tend to keep warm tea for when I'm sick, if I have it at all. Basically just stick with water or Diet Coke.

Lois

etirv said...

Also like plain hot tea... and tazo chai isn't bad either!

Margay said...

I do love my coffee! I start every day with at least two cups. Sometimes, I like the fancy stuff, flavored or with toppings (latte style) or even iced, but mostly, I just like it plain, cream and sugar.
Margay

Thediscoera said...

I can't express enough how I love coffee. I got my first taste of coffee from my father. He is Cuban and Cubans love expresso. My favorite is the "Cortadito" - Cuban expresso with a touch of steamed milk - delish!!!! I am also a fan of Mocha Latte with the works - the more whip cream the better - the combination of coffee and chocolate just makes it seem like I'm in heaven and don't forget drinking it while reading a good book in your most comfortable clothing in a nice warm area is the best.

lrwirum said...

I can't stand coffee but I absolutely love tea. :-) I have a favorite that is a vanilla carmel that tastes great and I recently found a vanilla carmel creamer that goes with it very well. Yum. :-)

Larena

PhyllisC said...

My parents have always drank coffee and like yours, straight black. I've only started drinking it in the last few years, but I like mine sweet and with cream - and I love the flavored creams.

I also love tea, especially when the weather is cool.