It is Thanksgiving week–my girls are off of school, and they have cooking on their minds. We have already been to two grocery stores to get supplies for major baking. I was thinking about my books and how food has played such an important role in the stories. In JANE IN BLOOM, food becomes Lizzie’s enemy. And it becomes Jane’s comfort. Ethel, Jane’s babysitter, shows Jane that cooking can show someone how much you care about them (her recipe for Mac & Cheese is on my website in case you want to try it). In my new novel, food also plays an important role in bringing people together. And baking is the language of love. I know that it makes me very happy to cook for my family and to present them with a healthy meal that they will enjoy. The ability to do that is something I am truly thankful for because there are so many places in the world where a mother cannot do this for her family, even if she wants to. So this Thanksgiving week, if you have time for a writing exercise, think about food. What role does it play in your work in progress? Does food bring your characters together or tear them apart? Is food plentiful or lacking? What do your characters eat and how do they feel about it? If you want a break from your work in progress, write a scene where food is the central character. How is the presence or absence of food driving your scene and what feelings does it create in your characters?
I want to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving surrounded by people you love. I give thanks to you for reading my blog!