Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Always eating?

The novella I've been banging on about - you know, the one I'm messing about with, when I should probably be doing something else - the one with the con trick and the weddings? Well, I noticed, when I picked it up and was about to write another scene and someone had a coffee cup in their hand - these people are always eating and drinking. 

A number of scenes have a group of friends meeting on a project outside their regular work, and my instinct, when I get them together, is to feed them. Makes sense to me, as it is probably what would happen in real life, and gives me a lot of fun deciding what they are going to eat. And will it have garlic in it? I like books that have descriptions of food in them, but I am wondering if I am getting a bit over the top with this one so no more food, at least for the next few chapters.

But it made me think about things people like to read, and standing in the books aisle of the supermarket I realised that I am not alone. Have you seen how many books have food in the titles - or revolve around the hospitality industry? Admittedly the most popular food groups seem to be cupcakes or baking of some sort, not garlic bread and pasta, but still food.  And a lot seem to have 'cafe' or 'hotel', or sometimes 'guest house', in the title. Closely followed by 'cottage'. Which tends to conjure up images of cream teas in the garden and hot chocolate by the log fire, but that might just be
me. The hospitality industry is missing a trick, not giving all us authors unlimited access to their
wares, strictly for research purposes. But that might just be me, too.

The image of those words - cafe, hotel, guest house - are they actually aspirational? Do they all evoke ideas of community, holiday, escape, time out, chance to reflect, to change, to sample another lifestyle, to meet new people? I don't know. Maybe. But I do like to read about what people are eating.

And don't get me started on the decor of that seaside cottage, or we'll be here all day.


  1. I got a bad review once because they said my characters were always drinking coffee! I love food related books and enjoy writing food descriptions too.
    Angela Britnell