For most of my adult life, I have collected cookbooks. Old ones, new ones, anything that had beautiful photos, or stellar writing, or covered a subject I wanted to learn about – they all snuggle up next to one another on my bookshelves, stack up on my desk and clutter my nightstand.
In my dreams. In my imagination. In my secret world, there was a cookbook up there with my name on it.
I have news. Big news. Happy news.
I’m writing a book. That’s right. Me. A book. Me and a book. Me, writing a book. Seriously. I still can’t quite believe it.
And the best news of all? I’ve got a star studded team to help me.
My literary agent, Martha Kaplan, has been my supporter and enthusiastic, encouraging voice for the last year as I wrote the book proposal. She never failed to tell me when I had gone off track, or when I was on the right one. This never would have happened without her unflagging belief in me. After all, what did I know about writing a book? Fortunately, I knew something about getting the right person to help me figure it all out. The bonus? Martha knows the best little restaurants in New York.
The publisher is W.W. Norton. Just take a look at your cookbook shelf and you’ll see why I’m so delighted. They make some seriously beautiful books. They have been warm, welcoming, and I already feel like part of the Norton family.
My editor is Maria Guarnaschelli who just may be the smartest woman I’ve ever met (and if you knew my mother, you know that’s saying something.)
Here are a few of the books Maria has worked on … The Joy of Cooking. The Cake Bible. My Bread. The Zuni Cafe Cookbook. Charcuterie.
Seriously, Maria is legendary. She works with only a couple of authors each year and – pinch me! – one of them is me. (She’s also working with my friend, the amazing baker Stella Parks aka The Brave Tart, so I have a book-writing sister wife, which is almost as wonderful as having a book deal.)
Melanie Tortoroli, Associate Editor, has already endeared herself to me. After all, she started canning this summer. I have a feeling I’m going to have Melanie on speed dial.
Mrs. Wheelbarrow’s Practical Pantry is scheduled to be published late in 2014. There will be recipes for all sorts of canning, even pressure canning, but also smoking, curing, brining, cheesemaking, fermenting, dehydrating and freezing. Everything I can think of to fill up your pantry, and then all sorts of recipes for using what you’ve stashed. Expect plenty of encouraging words, helpful methods, tips and tricks. But most of all, I’m going to make all of these preservation techniques as angst-free as possible.
I’m completely, totally over the moon and so, so happy to finally be able to tell you all. It’s taken months to get to this place, and it will be another year of writing, recipe testing, and editing before I can breathe again. But soon, very soon, there will be a book on the shelf with my name on the spine.