Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Making Edits.

The other day I was telling my brother about my latest work ambition, which involves food writing and culinary event management. "That's... different," he said.

This is often the type of response I get from people when I tell them about my new explorations: blank stares and weirdly neutral responses. I was surprised initially, but I shouldn't have been, considering the only thing I ever cooked until the last few years was scrambled eggs and Amy's frozen dinners. Also, the subjects of knife skills and recipes aren't as riveting to some people as they are to me.

I've never liked the word "career," and I no longer feel compelled to apply it to anything I do for a living. In my mind, people who have careers make a conscious choice within a certain field and then become (or work to become) accomplished at it.

Then there are people like me, who fall into something because they love it, or because it pays, or something in between. Any level of accomplishment that happens along the way is purely incidental.

After a lot of talk and little action, I finally pitched and wrote my first bona-fide food article, which was published today.

I turned it in early and with excitement, especially proud of my first paragraph:

For all our reverence of the cherry, baked lovingly into pies and perched regally atop sundaes, Americans have not always treated it kindly. We have subjected it to a garish preservation makeover and dubbed it "maraschino," trapped it in cans with gelatinous goo and called it "pie filling" and married it to that fussbudget verb, "cherrypick."

Sheer poetry, I tell you! The editor called it "cumbersome" and advised me to do away with it.

Oh yeah: I'd forgotten about editing. For the most part, the things I've written as a freelancer or staffer have been published without major changes. I used to think that was an indication of my writing prowess; now I know that it's because I have written mostly for Web outlets that are understaffed.

Regardless, the article is out there now. I'm hoping it's the beginning of many future challenges involving cooking, writing and editing.

4 comments :

Marcel said...

Delicious -- especially the photos. Are you sure that's also a "career" you might want to pursue! I think Martha Stewart needs your photos on the covers of her books!

hans q. bungle said...

congratulations! the food world could use someone with your wit, ability, and lack of pretension.

i am resisting a crude and awkward pun, half out of decency and half out of not being able to phrase it right.

i've worked around food for 14 years and i still don't know much about it. what does that mean?

Anonymous said...

Spit out that pun man. I thought this blog was all about Uncomfortable Moments!

the wayward o said...

i wanted to make such a pie but i lost cherry on way back from store.