Wednesday, December 8, 2010

eating and cooking are her meditations

i haven't started transcribing the session with my editor yet because i want to look at it from an open space of quiet, stillness and brightness. or else i'll be looking at the situation through the lens of i'll get lost, i can't hold it all. so, in the last several days, every meditation reveals, or shall i say illumine, one thing my editor says. today is this. suk wah, you write about food so beautifully, can you put it to a bigger use?

as i chew on this nugget i begin to see that this is where craftsmanship comes in. i really thought i had, through painting pictures of the heroine's relationship with food, that food is her spiritual path, eating and cooking are her spiritual practices. as my writing coach...and that happens to be hwubby...says, she is always hungry. hungry is a spot on descriptive for this character. she is consumed by hunger. the way she was raised and conditioned she understood this hunger as insatiable desires for food. it's how she soothes herself and calms the racing mind. so i thought i didn't have to spell it out in so many words to say that eating and cooking are her communions, her meditations. i say, i don't want to be preachy. editor says, you can do it in a sentence, even a phrase, very light-handed, but you must do it or else you lose the reader, nobody can endure pages after pages of eating lox and bagels and have no idea where you are going with it.

i see. i have to connect dots and i have to reduce.

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