The Mind of a Chef; Writing; Reading

THE MIND OF A CHEF. Been watching a lot of this show over the past few months, not on Netflix, but on my local PBS station. The thing I like about The Mind of a Chef is how the episodes – mini-documentaries, really – are generally so well done that I find myself investing in the lives of these various chefs, who I might not otherwise care that much about if they weren’t swaggering around the world on semi-drunken, binge-eating travelogue shows.

WRITING. Taking a cue from Warren Ellis’s newsletter, I’m going to talk about my current works in progress by giving them code names. Not because of any contractual obligations about confidentiality, but because I’m superstitious. I’ve always felt that talking too much about what I’m writing takes away some of the urgency to write it. It’s just possible that I’m just so lazy that I’ll look for any excuse. Either way, I’m going to make more of an effort because I’ve been told lately that people like knowing what writers are working on. And so…

  • PROJECT RUST: An essay for an anthology series I’m trying to crack into. It’s about 800 words about a certain sanctuary in my hometown. Gonna give it another pass or two and send it in.
  • PROJECT FLOSS: Novel that’s currently in index cards, hidden under a blanket on a table in my lab. The toes, chest, and nose are poking through. Gonna have to suck it up, switch the Jacob’s Ladder back on, and make it walk.
  • PROJECT FIELD: A short story I’m wrestling with from an idea that won’t go away. Just as well because my problem has always been follow-through. It’s been on the back burner, but I just saw a call for a story anthology for which this piece could work.

READING. Just finished Rust Belt Chic: The Cleveland Anthology from Belt Publishing, because Cleveland Rocks. It’s a little frustrating though that I’m going through about 10 books simultaneously, and this one I picked up and devoured this essay collection in three days flat. Will probably read Car Bombs to Cookie Plates: The Youngstown Anthology next because it has pieces from, among others, Ed “Al Bundy” O’Neill and Christopher Barzak. And then I really need to get back to my reading queue before I start Gabrielle Hamilton’s memoir Blood, Bones & Butter: the Inadvertent Education of a Reluctant Chef, but it’s tempting, since it’s her episodes currently showing on The Mind of a Chef.

And so turns the circle…