Thursday, November 29, 2007

Creating a Read-Write Culture

Things have been quiet on my end in terms of the blog because I am in the process of writing a cookbook. A very, very small cookbook but one that requires any extra typing and thinking time I have. I am taking a cookbook writing course sponsored by Media Bistro and instructed by Corinne Trang. Corinne is teaching the class so much in a short four weeks, things about creating and structuring a recipe that I never realized while reading and using many of them. I'm really enjoying the process of just sitting with one set of ingredients and instructions for a good, long while, figuring out what to say and what not to say, and really thinking about why I would want to share a recipe, the story behind it. I'm reading the two cookbooks by my bed, Corinne's Essentials of Asian Cuisine: Fundamentals and Favorite Recipes and Mollie Katzen's Sunlight Cafe in a new light, amazed by the amount of detail, thought, and love that goes onto every page. I admit, I first loved cookbooks mostly because I just loved eating and wanted to make something to eat. That's definitely still true but now that I'm trying to write my own recipes and figure out what I want to say with a collection of them, I truly realize what an all-consuming, creative endeavor it can be, even separate from the cooking and eating (although, of course, eating will always be my favorite thing to do).

Anyways, when I opened a window to create this post, I intended to write a sentence or two about the class and just share this letter from Kristin Hersh about how being a culture of either producer or consumer is completely outmoded and how blogging and blogging about food in particular is really an enterprise of community, sharing, blurring, if not obliterating, the lines between reader and writer. But then I just had a whole bunch I wanted to say. It's always cool to be surprised as you're writing. It happens to me all the time. I really never know what I'll say until I do, no matter how sure I am of a point as it sits in my head. That's the funnest part. So, this isn't about food per se, but it is about sharing and art and that's all a part, a huge part, of food. So here are parts of Kristin's letter, which you can read in its entirety here. Then please listen to, share, and play around with her song "Slippershell."

As many of you may already know, CASH is an acronym -- it stands for the Coalition of Artists & Stake Holders. The name indicates just what we're all hoping to build here -- a coalition through which we blur the line that's traditionally stood between creators of content and the consumers of that content...

We're all stake holders here. We all stand to gain from a productive relationship. Maybe it will help to think of this relationship as a conversation...

Art is by nature a conversation. I'd like us to make it a community. Think about what you have to offer. Read-only culture is not enough anymore. We'd like you to treat this stuff as read-write...

What does read-write mean? Maybe as you're listening to "Slippershell", you're inspired to DO something: paint a picture, write an essay, make a video, remix, or even re-record the song. Please do so.

1 comment:

Brian said...

I personally think that Kristin Hirsh is the Julia Childs of independent music!

Excellent post, my love!

XOJPBKOX