"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
Information & inspiration to hone your craft and increase your cash...Since 2009

Friday, April 8, 2016

Slices of Life...More Writing Lessons from the Kitchen


Jen's Homemade Pork Roast

If you've been reading this blog for awhile, you already know that I'm a big "foodie."
So, I thought I'd give you something to "chew on" today, to help you become a hotter, more efficient writer, using a common practice of which we all can relate.

A wise man once said: "Food is a universal language we all speak."
How true! So, I'll start the conversation by sharing some of my most valuable creative lessons garnered from the kitchen.

Feel free to share your own personal "seasonings" by leaving a comment at the conclusion of this post.

See if you agree with these lessons and analogies...

Determine the best use of your time.
Often I view shows where the TV cooks go through elaborate measures to prepare home-made pasta, or pizza crust, or pie shells from scratch. Don't get me wrong: I love to cook and bake, but I would rarely indulge in these particular activities. Why?
Because there are perfectly fine store bought items in these categories that can save time and effort, and yield a similar result in terms of taste quality.
If you're juggling the writer's life, along with a family and a full-time gig, you definitely can appreciate that "time is money."

It's all about working "smarter, not harder." Could the countless hours you spend on connecting via social media be better spent pitching clients? Writing a guest post for pay? Could some of your business tasks, (like researching, ordering more office supplies, and looking for blog images) be better handled through the help of an intern or admin assistant? Assess and respond accordingly.

For flavor enhancement, let your food sit awhile before serving.
Whether it's baked goods, barbeque, or a hearty stew, Martha Stewart often instructs us to let it rest before we serve to our guests. This in an effort to let juices settle and other "magical" processes to take root.

A similar concept applies here. After an article, post, or poem is completed, before you hit "publish" or "send," set it aside...for a few hours, or a day or two. The reason? When we revisit it and review it with "fresh eyes," often we can detect mistakes that we may have initially overlooked in our excited  or tired state.
Or we are able to infuse an extra added ingredient that would provide greater depth and "flavor" to elevate our readers' experience.

No matter who does the cooking, everybody ain't eatin'.  
People have different palates.
The other day, I got into a discussion with a friend of mine who loves okra in his beans and Collard greens. I don't know why, but okra? Well...it kind of repulses me. Sorry, okra fans. There's something about the texture that's a turn-off.

As many of you know, every year, different sites produce a "Top" listing compilation of their favorite blogs. It's always interesting to see how widely this list varies. Truth is, no matter how well we write, not everyone will want to "consume" what we have to offer.  Don't agonize over it.
Cater to those that do.

Jen's Sweet Potatoe Soup

Left-overs should never be over-looked.
Sunday's Baked Chicken becomes Monday's Chicken Tacos or Chicken Salad for me. It gives me more bang for my buck!

For greater efficiency and greater earning potential, always "re-purpose" your content.
Be resourceful.
Suzanne Lieurance, author of  "The Morning Nudge" and writing coach shares:

"You don't need to be a well-known speaker or writer to repurpose your content.
You just have to think like a marketer.
Today, take a look at how (and if) you are repurposing your content to make the most of everything you create."

When it comes to writing, lessons abound. Look around you. Particularly in your everyday environment. And keep these "morsels" of advice in mind, to bring more to the writing table.
Thoughts? Agree or disagree? What would you add?


  1. I agree! These are good points, and I find them to be true with my writing. One thing I do while cooking is clean up as I go. I realized while reading this post that I do the same with my writing, editing and tweaking as I write. Thanks for great "food for thought"!

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Karen,

      I clean as I go too. Definitely makes for a smoother process. Right? Much appreciation for starting us off here. :-)

  2. What a cool way to draw a parallel, Jen. Like Karen, I agree (and on the okra,too, blech!). Have a wonderful weekend.

  3. I find this post interesting. The way you tied cooking and writing together. Thank you. Blessings to you and yours.

  4. Quietspirit,

    Thanks for adding to the mix today. Always great to reconnect! :-)

  5. Excellent analogy even though I am on the other side of cooking--eating. One take away for me is to use my time wisely. Thanks for a great piece. Steph

    1. Thanks, Steph, for adding to the brew!
      Bon Appetit. :-)

  6. P.S. I think I like to eat as much as I like to cook. Ain't no shame in that. :-)

  7. I really like the analogy about Left-overs, and re-purposing content.

    In a blog post I wrote today you can read about a special cartoon I created some years ago,

    And how I recently re-designed it into designs for among other things a Tennis Polo Shirt & a Tennis Performance Hat.