When I think of the perfect writing spot I think of the place E.J. Mellow sits down at to create her intriguing work. Natural light releasing energy, framed artwork and quotes inspiring the day and teacups always filled to the brim. In case you couldn’t tell yet, E.J. Mellow is an author and as a writer myself, I connected with her through her award winning contemporary fantasy book series and, later, her tea obsession. I may or may not have became a bigger fan of her writing after I found out most of it was done with tea by her side. At the tea table we discussed how tea influences her writing, we tour her tea and writing space and much more.
The kettle is on and I can hear it about to sing. What tea are you going to steep for us today?
I’ve been obsessed with a tea called Magicienne by Nina’s. It’s a green tea base with pineapple pieces, coconut rasping, dried pineapple, and cream flavors. Not only does it taste like heaven, but the container is so pretty. There’s an amazing tea and coffee store called McNutly’s Tea & Coffee Co. in the west village in New York City (my home) and they sell the best tea from all over the world. When I’m looking for something new or different, it’s my go-to.
I originally started my blog as someplace to write with a cup of tea by my side. Only a few posts in did it actually start to become all about tea. I love that I’m always seeing your behind the scene writing photos on Instagram and tea is there. How would you say tea influences your writing?
Thank you so much! And I would say tea is 100% something I need while I write. It also sounds like my relationship started similarly to yours. I began to drink tea more frequently because of my need to find a cafe to work in, which of course led me to the obligatory purchase of something in exchange for an obscene amount of squatting time. Since I’m not really a coffee drinker (love the taste, but too much hurts my stomach), I naturally went for tea. This turned from a casual purchase to a habit to a ritual. Making a pot of tea now has become such a calming part of my morning and mental preparation to sit down and write. I don’t think I’d get much done without it. Plus, who doesn’t love a cute teacup by their side?!
Ah, cute teacups is another obsession we have in common! What came first for you: your love for tea or your love for writing?
I’ve always loved tea, but I would say my passion for writing came first. Now they go pretty much hand in hand.
Take us on a tour of your tea & writing space.
My usual writing and tea drinking space is now in my office at home. It gets great natural light during the day and nothing beats lighting a yummy scented candle, making a pot of tea and sitting down to get lost in a world. My desk faces a wall, but I’ve peppered it with things that sooth me and art that clears my mind, and allows me to concept.
I also have a small reading chair by the window and a bookcase that spans one wall so I feel surrounding by cozy.
Your writing space is definitely one I envy! Would you say there is a particular tea you drink the most, or find the most inspiration from when writing?
My go-to tea is definitely a green tea with anything jasmine or floral. I’m not sure what it is about that combo, but it seems to wake me up and make me feel fresh, almost like taking a shower for my mind. Haha, that probably sounds weird, but that’s the best way I can describe it. Two teas that I buy in bulk are Mighty Leaf’s Green Tea Tropical (my favorite to ice during the summers) and Harney & Sons White Vanilla Grapefruit, though I will be adding Nina’s Magicienne to this list now too.
Black, Green, Yellow, White, Oolong or Puerh?
Hot, Iced or Cold?
eeeee, hard choice!! If I have to pick one I’d say hot.
Teapot, Infuser or Gaiwan?
Teapot with infuser
Straight, Sweetened or Latte?
I’m a simple creature I like my tea straight.
Cheese or Chocolate pairing?
I love a good pastry with my tea, banana bread or muffin.
What is one important advice that you would give to tea lovers who are also aspiring writers?
Hmm, I would say to stock up on your favorite tea before you sit down to write your book. Nothing is worse than going to refill your cup and seeing that your tea leaves are gone.
But if you want a more writer specific piece of advice I will leave by quoting one of my favorite authors, Julie Kagawa, who said, “the ones who made it are the ones who never gave up.”