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Need brainstorming help for Paris writing locations, please.

Need brainstorming help for Paris writing locations, please.

Jan 16th, 2007, 04:49 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2005
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Need brainstorming help for Paris writing locations, please.

In early March I will travel to Paris with a college writing class. They will spend time journaling (the basis for later, fully developed essays) while there. I can think of several wonderful outdoor locations for writing. However, given the iffy weather at that time of year, I wondered if anyone can think of a few great indoor spots (aside from the obvious option of cafes) where a class of twelve might linger and work. Thanks for any ideas!
UNCalum is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 05:56 PM
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The passages quickly come to mind.


Degas Paris Walks: The Passages (revised)

Kansan is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 06:00 PM
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If I interpret your request correctly, I believe you're looking for an inspiring location where there is room for note taking and exchange of ideas. I can think of a few places that I've seen "class trips" taking place. The Conciergerie comes to mind as there is lots of room in which to gather a small group together and the prison area is interesting on several levels (historical, ethical). I've often seen student groups in the lobby of the Louvre and in the Carrousel du Louvre, below. Lot's of inspiration there (including the "people watching"). Time spent under a bridge along the Siene could lead to some interesting essays. For a museum that has it all (history, fine art, decorative art)with many areas to group together, you might consider the Carnavalet.
Margaretlb is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 07:23 PM
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I think this is a difficult question because a group of 12 is a lot of kids to just take over some venue, cafe or whatever. I think the Louvre suggestion would certainly work, they have that food court section with lots of tables and you probably won't be kicked out.

I don't think the passages are a good idea at all, there is no place for a group of 12 to sit and write in them, they are stores.

I would also suggest the national library in the 13th (Bibliotheque Mitterand), there are lots of tables there and that's more what a library is for.
Christina is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 07:50 PM
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To clarify a bit, these will be seniors and grad students. The sessions will be for writing only--food and drink as well if in a cafe. No significant noise will be involved as the formal instruction will have taken place at the hotel. However, we will take up a bit of space and do not want to create any problems. Thanks so much for the good ideas already offered. Please keep them coming.
UNCalum is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 07:59 PM
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The Café de la Paix, Grand Intercontinental Hotel,would be an inspiring (but expensive) venue. Though, if you were to linger for several hours it might be worth it.

Also, the Café des Editeurs in the 6me might be perfect - it was, after all, a gathering spot for all the great early 20th-century writers.
StCirq is offline  
Jan 17th, 2007, 07:31 AM
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>They will spend time journaling ....

I'm not sure that that is permitted in France.
ira is offline  
Jan 18th, 2007, 11:53 AM
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It would be difficult to find that many empty spaces in many of the cafes I go to, and of course you'd have to buy something, but it's certainly possible in the bigger ones, and easier at certain times of days.

I actually had the perfect idea, I don't know why I didn't think of this first -- you could do this in a church. They are free, open almost all the time, have plenty of benches/seats, and are quiet and contemplative. And at least they may get one in the mood more than, say, McDonalds. The only trick is finding one with enough light to write by, as some can be dark, but I don't think that is a huge problem. Many of them have enough light, at least in certain areas, that you could write by it. Some are quite bright in areas if it is daytime (although if you are only doing this in bad weather, it might not be sunny). One I think might be good is the Madeleine on the Right Bank. That is quite large, and the interior is really very beautiful and different from the older churches, and they have quite a bit of light in there, as I recall.
Christina is offline  
Jan 18th, 2007, 01:15 PM
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Personally I always get aggravated with the groups that sit around under the pyramid inside the Louvre (where the ticket booths and bookshop is). They're invariably in the way.

Very atmospheric though is the underground area inside the Carrousel du Louvre near the medieval walls. Away from all the shops. Leave the Louvre proper and walk straight back as far as you can go. The lighting is dim but it's neat space. Don't know if there's room for a group but it's worth looking at.

Christina's idea about churches is a good one. I've written in churches by myself in Paris many times.
DejaVu is offline  

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