Of all my big dreams, this one is probably the most out of left field in that I don’t really talk about it much so it may come as a surprise to people who know me. Then again, if they know me, it might not be surprising at all. Although I currently make my living as a registered nurse, I don’t know how long I’ll want to stay in healthcare. I think there’s something to be said for being in control of your source of income and workspace, and owning your business is a solution. In my case, if I were to become an entrepreneur on a scale larger than a one-man publishing venture, what I’d want to do is have my own literary café.
I envision a mid-sized locale with space to comfortably fit a bar/counter area, about a dozen tables and chairs, maybe a comfy sofa or two, and a designated event corner. I want a cozy environment where lovers of literature in all its forms can feel welcomed to have a drink and snack while they read their favorite book, whether in paper or electronic format, while normally-isolated freelancers work on their books on laptops, tablets, or composition notebooks. Our menu would be small but iconic and flavorful, featuring coffee drinks, sodas, juices, and maybe some select adult beverages, all served alongside baked goods from a local bakery, and some delectable sandwiches that take advantage of international flavors and feature cute and corny names harkening to literature classics (something like a Swedish meatball sub called Girl With The Meatball Tattoo… yes, that corny).
I would work to create an environment that invites conversation among patrons, whether informal between groups of friends meeting to catch up, or formal meet-ups like book club discussions meant to bring people together around a common love of books and literature. In the evenings, the event space would be alive with diverse talent sharing their work, whether a local musician strumming their songs of protests and longing, a visiting poet sharing their latest rhymes or slam poetry, or an author reading excerpts from their book and engaging in a Q&A with the audience.
The biggest hurdle, aside from funding, is that I don’t have a business background, so I’d need a partner that can help me run the place in a responsible manner to ensure the café prospers and becomes a thriving business.
So that’s my big, achievable dream, to open a literary café where I would want to hang out, work, and feel inspired and invigorated, so that others of like mind may have it as well. It is certainly the most ambitious of my big dreams, especially because it involves bringing in people other than me to make it happen, but how great would it be to make it a reality!