Monday, April 7, 2008

On Writing

I just finished Escaping Into the Open: The Art of Writing True by Elizabeth Berg. After enjoying her fiction so much, I was interested in seeing what she had to say about writing.

One piece of advice that caught my attention was something she got from the fiction editor at the Atlantic Monthly, Mike Curtis. This falls under the topic of having something to say. Apparently, he once described worthwhile content as being something you would tell someone in the car. I like that.

Writing comes so easily to her. I've had times where it flows, but especially here on the blog, I feel too self conscious and end up doing a lot of mid-sentence editing -- which, I'm assured in the book, does not make for the best writing!

Anyway, it was a fun, quick read and included a chapter of recipes! I'm including one here so you can snack while you're composing your next post; maybe Elizabeth Berg is on to something here!

Wickedly Delicious Chocolate Cake

1 3/4 cups flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup strong black coffee
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup salad oil
1 teaspoon vanilla

1.Preheat over to 350 degrees.
2.Combine dry ingredients in the large bowl of an electric mixer.
3.Add eggs, coffee, buttermilk, oil, and vanilla.
4.Beat 2 minutes at medium speed - batter will be quite thin.
5. Divide batter between two well-greased 9-inch layer-cake pans. Because this cake is so moist, it's not always easy to remove from the pan. Be sure to grease and flour the pans thoroughly, or bake in a 9x13-inch pan.
6. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center of each layer comes out clean, and cakes are just beginning to pull away from the sides of the pans.
7. Cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes.
8. Remove from pans to cool completely.


Anonymous said...

No Icing? :-(

Craig & Cindy said...

I love anything that's wickedly delicious! Thanks for posting this recipe. I'll definitely have to try it.

On writing: I'm subconsciously partial to run-ons and I can't get the colon and semi-colon worked out. Hmmph.... Sounds like a great read!