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  1. jinmyo, this may not change your views, but i do want to clarify something. my book has 37 chapters, 13 of which never appeared in the times magazine. when i began working on the book, i realized that (sadly) i couldn't just slap the magazine stories together and call it a book. so i did a lot of work on the stories, combining some, deleting others and rewriting many of them. my hope was to have a collection that read more as a cohesive story, with a beginning, a middle and an end. i added the extra 13 because there were things i wanted to write about, but which hadn't fit into the magazine's schedule. - a
  2. i would like to know where you get your dress shirts. very nice. and always so well pressed. also, and unrelated...i wonder about the art that goes with your stories. do you have input? how does that work at vogue?
  3. thanks to all of you for your engaging questions. and jason, thank you for the invitation. best, amanda
  4. i'm sorry you've had trouble getting hired. i wonder if you could ask to shadow someone in the kitchen. that's what i did at my first job. eventually, they allowed me to take on tasks. and perhaps they would do the same for you. many chefs also have office assistants, who work close to the kitchen. that may be a way for you to get in the door, and if you do well and the chef likes your work, maybe he or she would help you transfer to the kitchen. also, if you get hired with a good chef, this can be a very interesting job, because it involves everything from menu planning to hiring to new restaurant projects. it's a great way to understand how the entire restaurant operates.
  5. i do think you can. although i find that good editors won't ask you to review, say, a book on italian cooking if he knows you don't like italian cooking. he might assign the story to someone who has an interest in and knowledge of italian food. do you have an example in mind of this conflict?
  6. i would describe "cooking for mr. latte" as an expanded collection of the food diary columns. i cut out some columns, combined others and added 14 new ones with recipes. i did this to make it a more tightly knit story with an arc. with the original columns, i added back many of the recipes that were cut for space and also fleshed out their instructions. the magazine column was such a tight space that when a story ran long, we often cut recipes and edited them down to their bare bones components. so now those columns, in the book, will have an average of four recipes, each with a headnote and more detailed instructions. tad has been amused by the column and has stopped drinking lattes after dinner.
  7. right now, i just finished a book based on the nyt magazine columns. it's called "cooking for mr. latte". (it's discussed in some of the other q&a questions) i don't have any other books planned at the moment. i don't want to write books just to be published. this may be foolish, but i can't imagine writing a book unless i really cared about the subject. it's a lot of work.
  8. liza, hi. the readership of the dining section is very sophisticated and well informed, so i think they're more than receptive to such subjects. they keep us on our toes. already today i've received emails from readers who have bought meats from these farms.
  9. jaymes, what a lovely note. there's definitely plenty in the sunday times to keep you busy reading all week, so it's worth the investment. and col klink, thanks for the turducken photo. i just made one last weekend for a party. how did you smoke yours? and how long did it take?
  10. i really love her french regional cookbook. it's an early one, and may be out of print. it's filled with terrific recipes. unfortunately, the time i was there she was working on one of her least interesting books, which was about cooking meals in 15 minutes. my second year there, she did a book called "cooked to perfection", which is similar in design (and ambition) to lavarenne pratique, but i was less involved because i had, by then, begun writing my own book. anne is very old school and i appreciated it. i think i needed that, coming from the states. no anecdotes are popping to mind at the moment, but i'll respond again if one does.
  11. yes, but how lame can reading, eating and cooking be? i mean, it's much more fun training than, say, being an intern after medical school. it's also good advice because by doing all these things, a person is likely to find an area that he might want to specialize in. i often suggest the same thing, except that i also encourage people to travel. and if they want to write for a newspaper, i recommend they spend some time (at least a year or two) working in restaurant kitchens.
  12. hi suvir. thank you for your note and welcome. i don't recall a moment when i thought "aha! i should be a food writer!" it was more of a gradual process. i've always loved food. my entire family has. meals were important to us, and my mother was a great influence. whenever we'd go to the grocery store, if i asked her what she was going to buy, she would always say, "i'm going to buy what looks good." she would examine all the produce and inspect the meats. she cooked seasonally. we never ate tomatoes in the winter. and she liked to introduce us to new things. i can remember her bringing home kiwis once (they were exotic in pennsylvania) and telling us that a ripe kiwi would taste like every fruit distilled into one. another time, she covered the table with newspaper and handed us each a pomegranate. i suppose that i have many early memories of meals and tastes and cooking experiences, and that collectively they led me to take the subject of food more seriously and make a career of it. - amanda
  13. hi. i like your clip symbol. where did you get it? i would say that it was definitely in my mind when i applied to cooking school because i applied to be an "editorial stagiaire" at lavarenne. editorial stagiaires worked directly with anne willan, the director of the school, on her cookbooks. i didn't have conventional classes. my training was to cook her meals, to develop, test and edit recipes. at the end of the program, i did take normal exams -- both written and practical. there are many great food writers who haven't gone to cooking school. it's certainly not a requirement. for me, though, i think cooking in restaurants and going to lavarenne has helped in lots of ways. when i'm interviewing chefs, i know what to ask. chefs do so many things naturally that home cooks would never think of, and it's helpful to catch those details and ask them about them. at the times, i do a fair amount of cooking stories. most recently, i did one on turducken. i couldn't have done that story if i were a novice cook. knowing the basics of roasting, stuffing and slow cooking made the process of mastering turducken much more efficient. i also write a lot of recipes here. we have a wine panel column every other week and i do the pairing recipe for it. if i hadn't worked for anne willan (i worked for her for two years), then i might not know how to write a proper recipe.
  14. that was for a story about the bagged salad industry that ran a few weeks ago. it ran on 1/14. send me an email at amandah@nytimes.com and i'll send it to you in a reply.
  15. i don't know why. do you have any idea? i'd be interested if you do. it doesn't influence what i write about in any way. i've been at the times since 1997 and have received many critical letters and emails. after a while you begin to understand that not everyone will love your work. but to be honest, i feel like negative feedback is better than no feedback. it's always interesting to find out what readers are interested in, or what bothers them. (and it's pretty easy to brush off the cheap shots.) sometimes they will point out an error or tell me about something i missed in my reporting. i always want to know about these things. it has helped me discover some great sources. i have one reader who calls me up every few months and leaves messages about the good spots he's found. others email me regularly telling me which recipes they liked and which ones they didn't. i love the dialogue.
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