A love of the blogosphere along with an insatiable thirst for knowledge led me to the Sydney Writer’s Centre for a food writing course. Along with 15 other budding writers, I hunkered down for an intense two day workshop presented by the very knowledgable and talented food writer, Carli Ratcliff.
My aim for doing the course was to improve my writing skills for this blog, to learn new writing techniques and what to consider when writing about food. When I booked I had no idea that this was the first time the workshop was being held. What a happy accident!
To consider our palettes and the flavour wheel, we had chocolate and honey tastings to practice elaborately describing what we see, smell and taste. This taught me to take the time to really think about and appreciate the food I eat.
On our second day we had a visit from Touli at Mecca in Ultimo who treated us to a coffee cupping (tasting). Having never been a coffee drinker I found this a particularly interesting exercise. I can now appreciate that like wine, good coffee is very complex. There are so many aspects to consider. The quality of the bean depends on the climate where they are grown and the conditions under which they are cared for. How the beans are ground is important. When drinking coffee, the balance, structure and flavours change with temperature. Despite this new found knowledge and appreciation, I can confirm without doubt that coffee is still not for me!
We talked about finding your voice or writing style, how to structure a piece and write for publications, interviewing techniques and how to pitch ideas to publishers. While this is not something I had thought about before the course, it’s good to know because you just never know what’s around the corner.
I’ve always loved to write but have never considered myself as a writer. Carli encouraged us to dive in, start writing and refer to ourselves as writers. At first this seemed like a really daunting prospect but the idea is starting to grow on me.
I found the course really interesting. It inspired me to think bigger picture and be open to other prospects. It also gave me a lot of ideas! And most importantly, I hope it will help me bring you even better posts to read.