Musings from a Seattle personal chef
Helloooo? Anyone home? Boy, things sure are dusty in here.
So, um, yeah. It’s been a while. I’d be surprised if anyone stops by any more (heck, even my sister bailed months ago). I have at least one good excuse — I’ve run another marathon since last we spoke (shaved 52 minutes off my best time, thankyouverymuch) — but I can’t chalk it all up to that.
I wouldn’t say it’s a matter of writer’s block; I’ve composed a slew of posts in my mind. Nor have I succumbed to culinary mediocrity (okay, perhaps on occasion). Despite limited time and energy, we’ve eaten well. I’ve perfected a recipe for zesty, moist turkey burgers; concocted a nourishing post-run recovery drink incorporating frozen fruit and vanilla soy milk; tested the quality of “cheater” aioli over the real deal (both were delectable); whipped up not one, but two rhubarb pies (one baked, one fresh); hatched my own version of “A Man, A Can, a Plan” (“A woMan, A Few Cans, Not Much of a Plan,” if you will) and in what could be hailed as the ultimate blasphemy for this New England-bred gal, prepared a MANHATTAN clam chowder that’s irresistible (sorry Mom; I’ll turn in my Yankee card forthwith).
No, the real culprit is epistolary lethargy. I just haven’t had it in me.
I’ve had no problem posting on Eat Drink Run Woman (I’ve penned more than 30 posts since March 26), yet when it comes to food blogging, my readers deserve more. There’s an inherent intimidation in food writing; if you can’t measure up to the quality that currently exists, why bother?
Yet for me it goes deeper. What do I have to say that hasn’t been said before? How can I best illustrate my post to make it interesting? Take all those factors in mind and you’re looking at 3-4 hours a day at a minimum before anything is published. With my running musings, I can crank out a pithy entry in less than an hour.
So why the turnabout?
For starters, I’ve been mulling over my career. I absolutely love what I do, but inevitably I’ll tire of the same routine. Variety stimulates me. So as I near the 7-year anniversary of Ovens to Betsy, I’m pondering other opportunities to pique my passion and keep my mind fresh. Given my background in public relations, I’m naturally drawn toward food writing; hence, it’s time to dust off my blog.
During a recent trip to Maine I read Kathleen Flinn‘s memoir, “The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry.” Not only did she inspire me to consider moving to France for a year to attend Le Cordon Bleu, she motivated me to write. Upon returning to Seattle I was thrilled to see she was offering a food writing seminar at the Richard Hugo House, which I attended a couple of weeks ago. The course was jam-packed with advice, from writing recipes to cookbooks to restaurant reviews, to crafting compelling book proposals and magazine query letters, to how to develop a portfolio of clips.
I’m not going to hazard a guess as to how often I’ll post. I’d rather produce quality than quantity. But I certainly hope you check back and let me know what you think.
(By the way, the photo is a parody of a Runner’s World cover used for an interview for Runner’s Lounge. Ovens to Betsy does not condone running with knives. Please do not try this at home).