A few Saturdays ago I taught a day-long class on food writing to about 50 people (about half of whom were bloggers, and some of whom drove up from Portland) at the oh-so-chic Seattle Fairmont Olympic. Keren Brown of Foodportunity organized the event and invited me. Professional photographer and blogger Jackie Donnelly Baisa wrote a post about it and made her images available, so I thought I’d share a few with you.
Rebecca Mongrain from Sur La Table brought several copies of the company’s gorgeous new hardcover cookbook, Eating Local: The Cookbook Inspired By America’s Farmers for raffles throughout the day. (Disclosure: I researched the chapter on urban homesteading.) Other sponsors were Greek Gods Yogurt (OMG that fig yogurt) and Viv Agave, a prebiotic.
We spent the morning reviewing writing techniques and doing a writing exercises focused on the senses, using Red Hots candy. A few brave students read what they’d written, and some got laughs and smiles.
Then came an elegant lunch of sandwiches and salads, presented with panache by the chef at the hotel’s Georgian restaurant, Gavin Stephenson. He also made a jar of preserves for each attendee.
After lunch, I tried to keep people awake (it’s the deadliest time of the day for a teacher) by having them pair up to interview each other. Then we talked about food blogging, recipes, cookbooks, and the publishing process. These students were no amateurs: some were already published cookbook authors, and publishers had already approached some of the bloggers. It was a lively discussion with many knowledgeable people lending their insights. I’m always amazed by what I learn at these events.
At the end of the day I helped my young host Keren, who blogs at Frantic Foodie, shlep the props back to her place. It being Seattle, it poured as we made a run for her door. But never mind. I had a fantastic time and I can’t wait to go back.