Sally Charette


Sally Charette of Acton, California, travels to Andrew's Diner in North Hollywood, sitting at the same table every day to work on her novel, along with essays and articles.

"A cup of coffee and a warm greeting provide a powerful incentive for me to write before my day job begins," Charette says. "While writing is a famously solitary pursuit, there's a camaraderie amongst the staff and regular customers. We share the secret of early risers, that the hours before dawn can be especially productive. A diner is a great place to eavesdrop and keep in touch with the natural cadences of conversation—and to pick up story ideas."