Thursday, November 18, 2010

Trend Alert: Getting rid of bad food writing clichés

In our Eat Your Words course that just finished on Saturday, we had a running list of culinary writing clichés that really need to be locked in the basement for a very long time. (Yes, you are allowed to trot them out if you are trying to make a point, be ironic or funny, or if they are in keeping with the "voice" of a passage.)

Dianne Jacob, author of Will Write For Food, was obviously thinking along the same lines as we were. Her November 15, 2010, post, "The Worst Food Writing Words" has received 99 comments to date. My favorite "worst" is drinkerie. Gag.

Oh and anyone in the Edmonton area who would like a copy of Dianne Jacob's newly revised and updated book Will Write For Food: The Complete Guide to Writing Cookbooks, Blogs, Reviews, Memoir, and More (2nd edition, 2010) on the fundamentals of good culinary writing can contact me. I have two more copies to sell from my big box of books.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Eat Your Words Class of 2010/2011 - Food Trends

(Above photo via Julie Van Rosendaal's Cherpumple "cake / pie" hybrid as seen on Babble's Food blog. Dessert's answer to the turducken!)

Trend-spotting is a major part of any culinary writer's skill set. We talk about tuning into these trends and keeping a running list as we spot them. Here are the trends we compiled in class yesterday.

  • pop-up restaurants
  • “foodcations” (an off-shoot of the "staycation" trend)
  • locavore
  • raised wild game (elk, bison, wild boar, reindeer, etc)
  • craft beer-and-food pairings
  • ginger beer
  • food security issues
  • sustainability
  • food ethics
  • cupcakes or NOT (this is a trend that just won't die even when it's dead)
  • macarons
  • gastro-pubs
  • covercharges at restaurants
  • enomatic systems
  • wine bars
  • tapas – again
  • raw milk
  • lentils
  • quinoa
  • infused spirits
  • bacon -- still, it's a mainstay trend
  • meat-stuffed inside other meats trend, and in fact, any food stuffed inside other foods (see yesterday's Wall Street Journal article featuring Calgary food writer Julie Van Rosendaal's Cherpumple dessert.)
  • pork belly
  • sugar backlash
  • 80s fashion (so we're wondering how that will manifest itself in the food world)
  • growth of casual fine dining (aka premium casual)

Here are some links to other trend lists:

What are the trends on your radar? We'll add them to the list.

Via Twitter, we had a comment that waffles should be added to the list. Via Comments, Peter Bailey, the beer columnist for The Tomato and great book blogger, adds IPA and Imperial to our list of "in" beers for 2010/11. Thanks Pete.

And here's another trend round-up out of the UK: Food Trends to Peak in 2011: Special-needs, Urbanism, On-demand from The Independent Food & Drink pages.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Food-Writing Course Alert: Nov 6 & 13, Edmonton

The snow is flying in Edmonton, and that means, it must be time for my Eat Your Words food-writing course that I teach at Grant MacEwan University, City Centre campus in Edmonton.

This is a very lively two-Saturday course where we cover everything from getting your first published credits to how to spot food trends to pitching to small, medium and large newspaper and magazines. We cover the essentials of building your food-writing career: from starting a blog to getting a book deal, if that is your goal. The classes tend to be about 10 people and it's a very free-flowing discussion where everyone brings their knowledge and their expertise to the table.

Here are the specifics:

Eat Your Words
Do you have a discriminating palate? Do you love to concoct your own recipes? Do you have a nose for food trends? And do you want to get paid for doing something you love? Food is a hot topic, and editors are always looking for insightful, original, and well-written food and drink articles and recipes. Learn how to take your passion and put it down in words for newspapers, magazines, radio, and the Internet. $174, noncredit

WRIT 0155 (570)
2 Sat, Nov 6 & 13
9 am - 4 pm
Instructor: Jennifer Cockrall-King

For more information call 780-497-5346.
To register call 780-497-5000.

OR send me an email for more information.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Monday, March 22, 2010

Edmonton PSA: MacEwan Writing Works Spring Workshops

Hi all,

The MacEwan Writing Works (Edmonton) has just come out with the spring 2010 line-up of writing classes.

The courses range from grammar refreshers to blogging classes. These are open to writers of all levels. The above link has the complete list of courses. Here's a poster for a couple of highlights.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Eat Your Words Food Writing Course at UBC Okanagan

I'll be teaching another one-day foodwriting course at UBC Okanagan campus on March 27, 2010. The course runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Bring samples of your writing, or ideas you'd like to get working on. You don't need to have any prior writing experience, just a serious passion for communication your food- and drink-related points of view to the world.

Don't delay, register now and get your foodwriting mojo working.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Future of Story: Writing Workshop in Edmonton Feb 5 & 6 2010

This conference / workshop has a list of great writer-speakers.

Of interest to anyone in writing or story-telling. Register before Dec 11 to take advantage of the early-bird pricing. For more information, click on the MacEwan School of Communications page here and follow the links for detailed programming information and on-line ticket sales. Tix are $30 to $85 depending on the event.