Sep 092014
 
Rux_Martin

Rux Martin in her kitchen with some of the books she’s edited. (Photo by Barry Estabrook.)

I met cookbook editor Rux Martin years ago, before she got an imprint in her own name. Now she is Editorial Director of Rux Martin Books at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

She specializes in cookbooks, narrative nonfiction on food, and diet books. She has worked with Dorie Greenspan, Mollie Katzen, Jacques Pépin, and Ruth Reichl, to name just a few, and has edited New York Times bestsellers including The Gourmet Cookbook; Hello, Cupcake!; Continue reading »

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Aug 272014
 

When I wrote my recent post about four irresistible summer reads, I had a nagging feeling that I left off one I really wanted to tell you about. I didn’t realize it until after I pressed “publish,” of course.

I figured you always want to know about great food-focused books to read, right? And now I have two  for you, because many people left comments about their favorite reads on the last post, and I am starting to read those books too:

A-Fork-in -the-Road1. The book I forgot to list was A Fork in the Road: Tales of Food, Pleasure & Discovery on the Road, a first-rate book of essays edited by James Oseland, who just left Saveur magazine as editor-in-chief.

“Every traveler has two or three or even a hundred of them: moments on a journey when you taste something and you’re forever changed,” writes Oseland in the book’s introduction.”It might be a fancy or dazzling dish served by a tuxedoed waiter, or it might simply be an unexpected flavor or unfamiliar ingredient, offered by strangers and encountered by happenstance. At their most intense, these tastes of the new reveal Continue reading »

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Aug 052014
 

It’s the dog days of summer, time for lounging by the pool with a novel, reading on a blanket near your cabin, or hanging in your hammock with a book.

The point is to be outside. My favorite place to read food writing is my sun deck’s lounge chair, perhaps followed by a nap. There’s something luxurious about dreaming on a summer day.

So what’s good to read right now? I’m not talking about summer cookbooks. There are lots of lists of those. Instead, here’s a mix of novels, memoir and non-fiction narratives, some old and new, that are worth your time when you’re prone in the sun or sitting in dappled shade:
Last-Chinese-Chef

1. The Last Chinese Chef, by Nicole Mones. It’s been out since 2007, but I resisted reading this book for years, even though friends kept telling me about it.

I finally read this novel and couldn’t put it down. It’s a love story about a food writer who goes to Beijing for a magazine assignment and meets a chef. I also learned about the Chinese culinary arts and ancient food culture and enjoyed every minute. The author was a freelancer for Gourmet magazine who travelled to China frequently, and she’s a powerful storyteller. Continue reading »

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Jul 082014
 

A Guest Post by Jill Nussinow

Jill-Nussinow

Culinary Educator Jill Nussinow sells print-on-demand cookbooks on her website, which lead to passive income.

Just last week, I made almost $100 in e-book sales with almost zero effort. The cost was a minute or two of my time to login to e-junkie.com, enter the buyers’ information and hit the Send button. The money showed up in my PayPal account like magic. Who wouldn’t love that?

I got the idea to sell a downloadable cookbook in March 2011, when I hired a designer to format my manuscript. Within a few weeks, I had something saleable but wasn’t sure how to sell it. A publisher mentioned Continue reading »

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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 »

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Apr 082014
 
Woman-Buying-Books

Women buyers still predominate cookbook buying. And look! She’s already got her credit card out.

If you’re a cookbook author or hoping to become one soon, do you know who would want to buy your cookbook and why?

Adam Solomone, associate publisher of Harvard Common Press, answered this question for attendees at the recent IACP conference, where he gave a slide presentation of data collected by Nielsen, in conjunction with several North American publishers. Answers came from a core group of 2500 cookbook purchasers, a subset of 80,000 book buyers, based on the the last book they bought.

Here are the top findings:

1. Sixty-five percent of all cookbook buyers are women. You’re probably not surprised. Most buyers are college-educated. About Continue reading »

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Apr 012014
 
Food blogger and cookbook author David Lebovitz. (All photos by Ed Anderson.)

Food blogger and cookbook author David Lebovitz. (All photos by Ed Anderson.)

Writing books is both a struggle and a joy. That was David Lebovitz’s experience for his latest cookbook, My Paris Kitchen. It’s full of stories of his life in Paris, with gorgeous photos for classic and modern recipes. I caught up with David on email, to ask about his writing process and philosophy:

Q. Why did you want a book with so many stories? The recipes often have a story in front of the headnote! That’s a lot of work.

A. We all spend so much time online, madly scrolling through things and clicking around, that I’ve realized how much I miss sitting in a chair (or curling up in bed), with a book. The idea of My Paris Kitchen was to present a personalized picture of Paris. I like telling stories and the story of the book is how I Continue reading »

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