Wednesday, October 27, 2010

And the winner is… Flexitarianism

There has been what could be the beginning of a 'development' in relation to my cookbook. I attended a writer's conference this past weekend, mostly intending to gain some insight in regards to the fiction writing I have been attempting. At the last minute, a friend convinced me to propose my cookbook at the conference. My first proposal was a discouraging meeting with an uninterested agent who informed me that I lack credibility since I am not a chef or fitness professional. My first reaction? What I am doing here and what business do I have writing a cookbook? Shortly thereafter, I had a second reaction: Who does he think he is, anyway? I summoned up the last of my courage, gathered up the remaining shards of my shattered ego and booked another meeting. This time, I met with an enthusiastic editor who liked my idea, gave me some great guidance and suggested that when I finish I submit my project to her publishing company. Redemption – what a relief! And while I don’t know what exactly I was expecting from all of this, I think this glimmer of hope was more than I had hoped for. And while there is not yet cause for too much excitement, maybe just a tinniest bit would be okay.
I have been grappling with the theme, feeling like I was close but not quite there, and hoping an epiphany was slowly brewing in the depths of my consciousness. But it actually wasn’t; so it’s a good thing this editor threw me a bone. What she suggested is that my cookbook fits nicely with “flexitarianism”, a new buzz word in the food world which essentially refers to a semi-vegetarian diet, or a diet that includes less meat. And so there is it – my new angle.
One last thought on this: While the notion of flexitarianism pertains specifically to a compromise between vegetarianism and meat consumption, it also parallels the compromises that are found within my own recipe collection: The recipes are not meatless, but they contain less meat; they are not breadless, but contain less bread, and sweet treats are not forbidden, but the amount of sugar is reduced. In short, you can have your cake and eat it, too.
I’d like to shake things up a little and enlist your help as readers. First of all, what do you think of this concept, "flexitarianism"? Is it appealing to you, or if not to you, might it answer to the present trends in health and nutrition? Also, I need to come up with 50 or so more recipes, in addition to those already listed in my proposed Table of Contents. If you have any ideas, anything that isn’t there that should be or could be, I would love some suggestions for recipes to add. They need to correspond with the new theme, but I’m also open to suggestions and variations on this theme. I look forward to your ideas… 


  1. What about doing a full flexatatian meal? Like Christmas or Thanksgiving.

  2. Love this idea of flexitarianism -- definitely something that appeals to me as one who would gladly go vegetarian (for both health and "global justice" issues) but whose family does not wish to go there with me.... Compromise! A meeting in the middle. It's always good when we can have our cake and eat it, too. ;)

    So glad you got some positive feedback at the conference (Surrey? I was there, too). Good luck with your book!

  3. Just popped in to say hello and welcome to the blogosphere. I was at the conference, too, and sympathize with your first unfortunate agent encounter. Some agents are pretty brusque, and yet there's usually a nugget of truth to be gleaned from what they have to say. In this case the implication was that the job of marketing will be easier if there's a sound platform in place, and he's right... easier, yes, but not impossible without one. I'm glad your second encounter was more encouraging!

    I think your theme is a great one. We're all trying to eat healthier without really giving up the kind of food we enjoy. Good luck with the cookbook and your other writing projects. :)

    Carol Garvin

  4. I like the idea of flexitarianism! And that sandwich looks great!

  5. Thanks for the feedback - and thanks for reading. It's very much appreciated,espcially coming from expert bloggers. Your blogs are amazing, all of you! Something for me to aspire to...

  6. I like the concept. The recipes here would be good for the idea. But I don't like the word. I think for most audiences it'd be too complex, hard to say or spell, and I can't see people saying, "Hey, I just got this great flexitarian cookbook." I mean, use the concept, for sure. Just don't make it the title!