"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
As featured on: Pro Blogger, Men With Pens, Write to Done, Tiny Buddha, LifeHack, Technorati, Date My Pet, South 85 Literary Journal and other award-winning sites.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

How to Make Money Through Restaurant Reviews

It was a marriage made in heaven. Some might say love at "first bite".
A managing editor friend of a weekly newspaper needed someone
to cover a new, swank restaurant, and the person
originally assigned backed out. Since I had done work
for him before, he immediately contacted me.
Admittedly this marked new territory in terms of my
writing. But, as my figure will attest, I’m an expert
in eating!

You won’t find me living a lackluster life of sensible
salads and diet products. I love grub. Yep, I’m a
meat and potato gal who enjoys consuming food without
counting calories, and I’m proud of it!
Still very shapely, though.
After all, wasn't Marilyn Monroe a size 16?

What I found really cool about this sweet assignment
was not only would I get to dine for free, I was also
allowed to bring a guest. And did I mention the free
The night of the affair, the evening found me dining
at a beautiful supper club with bold black, red and
white decor with eclectic furnishings.
The cuisine consisted of contemporary small plates and
classic Spanish tapas. I devoured everything from
French chicken breast, Gorgonzola Au Gratin potatoes,
cheese fondue, roasted peppers with feta cheese,
appetizers, and cheesecake for dessert.

It was food fit for a queen! I ate things I couldn’t
even pronounce. I also had the pleasure of meeting
the famous Jack Brickhouse’s lovely wife dining here
as well. My friend who accompanied me for the evening was
really impressed with my “writer’s life.”

The next day, I simply converted my scribblings to a
review that answered the basic “who”, “what” “when”
and “wheres”. And for my efforts? I got paid $40.00,
had great fun, expanded my writing portfolio, and
discovered a new love!

Here is a winning recipe to get you started in food

. Note the textures of the foods, the colors,
the aromas, and what specifically made some dishes
truly palate pleasing.
2). TAKE PLENTY OF NOTES—I would suggest before the
alcohol if possible.
3). WEAR COMFORTABLE CLOTHING. It would probably be a good thing to wear attire that is not restrictive in
nature, or too tight. This way you won’t have to undo
your button under the table after consuming a lot of
4). BRUSH UP ON YOUR ETIQUETTE! This is no time to be
trying to figure out which utensils to use, or which
foods are considered “finger foods”.
5). IF YOU HAVE FOOD ALLERGIES, don’t sample new stuff
without knowing the basic ingredients.
6). BRING HOME THE MENU so that you can spell the
names of the dishes correctly, and are able to list
all the food offerings available to the general
. Some good ones to thumb through are Bon
Appetit, Food Writer, and Restaurant Reviews.

…And remember to leave your guilt and your diet at the
Local newspapers and regional magazines are great
places for your food review submissions.
Also check
out WWW.CRAIGSLIST.ORG and the Writers’ Market for
more complete listings. Bon Appetit!
Pen and Prosper welcomes your comments.


  1. No leftovers, huh?

  2. Jennifer Brown BanksApril 16, 2010 at 6:47 AM

    The "left overs" got a "going over" before I got home. :-)

  3. Sounds like a great meal -- and a great assignment. Mighty competitive field, but definitely worth pursuing. Taking a friend is valuable, of course, because you get to try more dishes. Your guidelines are good ones, too. Question -- did you give the place a positive review? If you did love the place, are you able to reveal the name -- or maybe even link to the article?


  4. Jennifer Brown BanksApril 27, 2010 at 3:08 AM

    Thanks Cynthia, for your thoughts here today.
    I really love doing food reviews. Heck, had I known about it earlier, it would have definitely been a career path.
    I also enjoy watching all the cooking shows--from Julia Child, to Rachael Ray, to Gordon Ramsey.:-)

    I did indeed give the place a good review!
    I think the place was called EXPOSURE TAPAS.
    It's located downtown. If I can remember more specifics, I'll send them your way.