I’m thrilled to return to Dubai, that hot, impossibly complicated and dizzying place of high rises, including the world’s tallest building. It was more than 100 degrees on my first trip in September 2013, and it will be about 100 degrees later this month. Sense a pattern? I’m packing light.
My workshops and conferences
They popped the question over lunch, about a year ago. Freelance food writer Robyn Eckhardt of the blog Eating Asia, and professional food photographer David Hagerman brought up this event at Cafe Rouge in Berkeley, CA. We had met to celebrate their book deal for a Turkish cookbook (I coached Robyn on the book proposal), which sold to Rux Martin. What did I think, they ventured, about a Turkish workshop on food writing and food photography in 2015?
I had to think about it for, maybe 10 seconds. Let’s see:
- Picturesque village of Alcati, on the Aegean and famous for its stone houses and narrow streets. Check.
- Lots of Turkish food, which fuses Central Asian, Caucasian, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean and Balkan cuisines. Check.
- Near the beach and Ephesus. Check.
- Gorgeous accommodations, covered in Conde Nast Traveller and Travel & Leisure. Check.
- A chance to hang out with two professionals I enjoy and learn from them. Check.
Like the song from my teenage years says, “See you in September,” woo woo woo, when the summer’s through…
Now, where was I? Oh yes. I’ll be traveling next month to two conferences, and then a third in October, talking about book proposals, career reinvention, and making your food writing sharper. Here’s what’s coming up:
September 8-11, 2014
Panelist and Workshop Leader
Association of Food Journalists Annual Conference
The Peabody Hotel
For the first time, I’m attending the Association of Food Journalists (AFJ) annual conference, where I will appear on a panel September 11 called [Read more…] about See you in September? (Or October?)
Put on by Food Blogger Connect, the students feasted on Middle-Eastern food and high-end Asian each night of the two-day workshop. The second day featured photography and recipe writing tips by Ellen Silverman and Martha Holmberg.
Food Blogger Connect founder Bethany Kehdy, fresh from her fabulous cookbook signing in Lebanon, coordinated the first-ever Dubai workshop with her sister Joslin Kehdy. [Read more…] about Dubai, Jordan and Israel
Gotta love those Canucks, eh? After years of attending food blogging conferences in the States and elsewhere, they’ve finally created their own.
The first annual conference was held at a gorgeous venue, the Hockley Valley Resort outside Toronto. There were excellent meals, wine, and snacks; tons of enviable giveaways; and most importantly, an outstanding group of Canadian speakers. Topics included writing as a skill and career, best practices for working with brands, and how people became successful as food bloggers, cookbook authors and freelancers.
Food Bloggers of Canada organizers Mardi Michels, Melissa Hartfiel and Ethan Adeland invited me to talk about getting comments on blogs and on how to get published. Speaking of that topic, I heard lots of buzz about this article on the Toronto Star Cookbook, an honest look (including advance numbers) about how hard it was to land a deal and write the book.
I had an additional qualification as a speaker: I’m Canadian, born in Vancouver (I moved to California in my 20s). Don’t get me started about how cool it was to be back in Canada, where people are polite and friendly and Nanaimo bars are on the menu. Plus, I got to stock up on Smarties, because my stash was running out from my trip to Ireland and London last year.
During the sessions and over meals, it was satisfying to hear about the lightbulbs that went off in attendees’ heads as they listened to speakers give background and tips on writing, blogging, and career paths. I caught up with my buddy David Leite, the conference’s keynoter, who charmed the crowd with stories about his writing, for which he has won many national awards in the US. I too learned from talented speakers who were self-deprecating, generous about how they do their craft, and unfailingly nice. I hope to hear more from them on social media. Now, where are those Smarties?
To read more about the conference, see these early posts:
- Key Learnings from the Food Bloggers of Canada Conference
- So You Think You Want to be a Coookbook Author
- To find more, check the FBC Twitter stream or read the FBC recap page of blog posts.
You know what I discovered about food bloggers at Eat.Drink.Blog in Australia and at my dinner talk with food bloggers in Auckland?
They’re just like food bloggers here in the US and in Europe. They’re excited to [Read more…] about Food Blogging in the Land Down Under
I’m just back from a fabulous trip to Ireland and England, where I taught two food writing workshops. They were in the planning stages for a long time, and I can’t say enough about my hosts.
I’m pushing through jet lag to tell you how it went and show you a few photos. The main part of the trip was to Ireland. Like me, you probably knew about the rolling green farmland, the charming towns and pubs, and the narrow country roads. But did you know about the how friendly the locals are, and how proud they are of their excellent Irish food? That’s what I discovered.
Chef and blogger Dorcas Barry was a generous host. She arranged for sponsorship by Bord Bia, the Irish Food Board; and Failte Ireland, which promotes Irish tourism. She also hosted my husband and me for dinner, making a traditional Irish meal of ham, cabbage, potatoes and parsley sauce.
My class took place in County Wicklow at BrookLodge, a hotel complex built around an organic restaurant, The Strawberry Tree. The night before, a group of us attended a private farm-to-table wild and organic dinner that included [Read more…] about My Food Writing Workshops in Ireland and London