Listening to: Lionel Ritchie & Guy Sebastian, All Night Long 2011 release for the Chch Earthquake & QLD Flood relief (get it from iTunes)
Making me smile: The cutest little 8 month old we have staying with us for a couple of days!
Two great passions in my life are reading and food – although I must admit my cooking has sometimes been ruined by my reading! And I think you'd be hard pressed to find a book that doesn't reference food or eating at some point! From kids books on, food features - remember in all the Famous Fives how the kids ate something every other page – ginger beer, and sandwiches and lashings of whipped cream; Noddy had his jammy buns; Harry Potter and the others have fabulous feasts at Hogwarts. Food, or recipes, have been used to structure novels (like a ‘recipe at the start of each chapter’ style) and favourite characters' food choices have spawned crazes for certain foods!
|Image by Ambro. www.freedigitalphotos.net|
But sometimes, I must admit to struggling with what the hero and heroine are actually eating. Now, it probably makes a difference in that I’ve been vegetarian for twenty years and am currently vegan - so yes, detailed descriptions of lamb racks or lobster don’t really do it for me! And yes, it’s going to rule out a lot of recipes that other people would be melting over. So when I’m reading and hit scenes where I’m not so fussed on the menu, I mentally swap the dish for one of my own choosing...
When my first book came out, all my friends tried to tell me the heroine was actually, truly me because she liked all my favourite foods (in particular pineapple and raspberries). So, indignantly, (because that heroine was absolutely not me) in my second book I made the heroine a total carnivore! Since then my characters have had lots of meals that might or mightn’t be meaty – like soup or pizza – and left it for the reader to put on their own topping say – but one of my favourite things to have my characters indulge in is, of course, dessert. I figure most people enjoy pudding! Then there's - ahem - breakfast, which to my mind is the best meal of the day! ;)
And then of course, there’s that other great passion that you can link in with food - in the book I just sent in, my heroine decides to do some wicked things with her bottle of maple syrup...
In WALK ON THE WILD SIDE – out now in Australia/NZ and in April in the US, there’s a phase where Jack turns up at Kelsi’s door every night and cooks her dinner – using the excuse that his kitchen is undergoing repairs, but really, it’s because it’s the one way he can spend some time with her. She knows the inoperable kitchen thing is an excuse, but she believes he’s only cooking for her because he’s concerned for their unborn baby... intentions, motivations, subtext... are really so much more important than what’s actually on the table ;)
But, let’s talk about it anyway – does it bother you at all when you’re reading a book and the characters are eating something you don’t fancy? Do you like reading detailed descriptions of what they’re eating or do you not notice so much? Have you ever read about a meal in a book and wished you had the recipe - even gone to an author’s online home to find such a recipe?
Is is possible for fun foodie scenes to stimulate your senses as much as some of those other scenes might?
Now, there aren't any recipes at my website yet sorry, but do head to my Facebook page - occasionally I talk about the wicked things you can do with fruit leather ;)