When she’s not dreaming up new plot lines, Evanston author Christine Sneed is relishing modern art, soaking up lake views, and sipping café-grade espresso (a daily must). The 45-year-old’s latest tome, The Virginity of Famous Men, probes the human condition through starkly realistic short stories.

Best local theater group

The Neo-Futurists. Their weekly show [of 30 plays in 60 minutes], Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind, is so fun.

My hidden Evanston gem

The South Boulevard Beach. It’s where I go whenever I have time to sit by the lake.

Podcast I’m hooked on

The One You Feed. It’s an interview show. A particularly good episode was with Gabor Maté, who treats addiction.

Secret obsession

Sugar. There’s a lovely new patisserie for chocolate croissants in Evanston called Coralie.

How I stay in shape

Spinning classes at Evanston Athletic Club—I go to Debbie on Saturday mornings. She does all sorts of speed work.

Favorite poets

Dean Young and Lynn Emanuel.

Beauty tip

Art + Science salon in Evanston. I go to Fergie for coloring and Yeefah for haircuts.

Record I’m spinning

Feist’s Metals and Dave Ramont’s Scofflaws.

A fashion item I’ll never retire

My black North Face parka—even though every woman on the North Shore seems to have the same one.

Rancilio espresso machine

Rancilio espresso machine

“It’s almost café grade, so you have to know how to use it; my partner and I grind our own beans each morning.”
$685, wholelattelove.com


Melanie Brown jewelry

Melanie Brown jewelry

“She’s a local artisan. I love her creations’ elegance and versatility.”
$23, beadazzle.us


Susan Kraut painting

Susan Kraut painting

“I put it on my second novel. It’s both precise and impressionistic.”
Addington Gallery, 704 N. Wells St.