Jun 242014
 

A guest post by Rebecca Lang

My heart leapt when my publisher, Oxmoor House, told me I was going to sell my cookbook on QVC, the television shopping channel network.

Before becoming a talent on QVC, though, I had to be trained on the Continue reading »

Jun 172014
 
Bestselling-Cookbookx-2013

Click on the image to see the cookbook names more clearly.

I was on a panel last week (during the Julia Child Food and Wine Festival at Bacara in Santa Barbara, CA) where the moderator showed this slide of the bestselling cookbooks of 2013 in the US, according to Nielsen research. If you haven’t seen it yet, I think you’ll find Continue reading »

Jun 102014
 
Diane-Quagliani

Dietician Diane Quagliani started out as a freelance food writer but eventually turned to the corporate side.

At an Oldways conference where I spoke recently, I met a dietician who is also an accomplished corporate food writer, Diane Quagliani. I wondered how her writing work is different from general food writing, and what advantages her degree gives her.

Diane, a registered dietician, has worked for many large food companies including Kraft Foods, McDonald’s, PepsiCo, Campbell’s Soup, Nestle, General Mills, and many public relations firms. She has also been a freelance writer and media spokesperson. She specializes in nutrition communications for a consumer and health professional audience.

Here’s what she had to say about how her degree as a dietician helps her with corporate work:

Q. What are your degrees?

A. I have three: a Bachelor of Science in Dietetics, a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, and an MBA. To become a registered dietician, I had Continue reading »

Jun 032014
 
Danielle-Svetcov

Literary Agent Danielle Svetcov

Literary agents are notoriously coy about interviews. So it was a pleasure to meet Danielle Svetcov, a San Francisco-based cookbook agent who’s part of a New York agency, Levine Greenberg Rostan, who welcomed the opportunity.

Here’s what she has to say about why she became an agent, what she’s looking for in a new author, and what’s new in cookbook publishing:

Q. So you’re a journalist, a professionally-trained chef, and you have an MFA. How did this massive education lead to you becoming an agent?

An agent wears a lot of hats: editor, writer, reader, critic, life coach, translator, therapist, news-junkie, diplomat, lifeboat driver — you need a lot of degrees for those jobs!

Here’s the actual path: age 13, request Sunset Magazine subscription, discover bologna has a fancier cousin, prosciutto; 18, fancy self a journalist and Continue reading »

May 272014
 

Frusted-BloggerA well-known food blogger loves to forward outrageous requests from food companies to me. I’ve kept them them in a file, until now, when I got her permission to share them.

As you know from the countless emails you delete, food companies want product coverage from bloggers. Nothing wrong with that, of course. It’s just the way  Continue reading »

May 202014
 
Stephanie-Stiavetti- Anime

Tech guru Stephanie Stiavetti

A guest post by Stephanie Stiavetti

I’m sure you’re familiar with the term Search Engine Optimization (SEO), one of the biggest time sucks we food bloggers endure to get more people to our blogs.

There’s no way around doing this work, as all bloggers must bend the knee to Our Great Google Overlords, with the exception of a handful of folks who are so insanely popular that they transcend the realm of mortal blogging (*cough*Ree*cough*).

The problem with keeping our websites search engine-friendly, however, is that every so often, Google changes the rules. And inevitably, for months following these changes, my inbox is flooded with the doleful cries of bloggers who have lost a chunk of their traffic.

If you’re smart, though, it won’t matter how Google alters its algorithm. All you have to do is produce good content and avoid questionable SEO practices. There are countless finer points, a few of which I’ll get to in a moment, but the fact remains that you’ll need not fear even the most Machiavellian changes Google makes to its ranking methods.

Here are a few tips for maintaining your trusted liege status to The Goog. They’re easy enough so that even if you’re  Continue reading »

May 132014
 

EmptyTableI know restaurant bloggers still exist, but I can barely find them.

I’m not the only one. The annual Saveur Best Food Blog awards doesn’t even list “restaurant blogs” as a category.

Sure, there are people who write reviews for websites such as Tasting Table and urbanspoon.com. But it seems that there are Continue reading »