Anyone who knows anything about me, knows that I had been compiling a cookbook for the last 30 years! What started out as a way to organize my hand-written recipes, turned into a project of monumental proportion! I spent hundreds (maybe thousands) of hours over the years, typing up my favorite recipes, printing them out and then organizing them into what eventually became a 4-inch, 10-pound binder! For years, that was my infamous “cookbook”. I was happy to print out the pages for anyone that asked…No secrets here…I loved sharing the recipes. The original version of the book was expensive to put together (average cost of supplies was $30-$40), not to mention time consuming (approximately 3 hours)! As the hand-made book became popular among family and friends, I began giving them away as gifts…I gave my niece, Lauren, one for her 16th birthday. She actually asked for a copy because she loved to cook even back then. (I am proud to say, Lauren is just finishing up her second year of culinary school.) Then, as my friends’ children began getting married, I always made a book for them and presented them with it at their bridal shower.
I knew for years that I wanted to publish the book…It became my dream. I felt confident that the recipes were good and that people would love them as much as I did. If I had to describe the contents to someone, I would just sum it up by saying it was an all-star collection of recipes. The problem was where to begin. I had always looked to “vanity publishing” as the answer and investigated various self-publishing companies over the years. In August, 1999, The Tampa Tribune ran an article on me and my cookbook…”Working Mom On Fire in the Kitchen”. The food editor at the time, loved what I had put together and that propelled my enthusiasm to new heights. She told me that I should not have to pay to publish my cookbook, someone should pay me! Wow! That changed everything! I invested $29.88 in the “Writer’s Market”, a book of “8,000 editors who buy what you write” and never sent out the first query. ..and there it still sits on my bookshelf!
Years and years of procrastination led me back to the self-publishing idea I originally had. Publishing the book myself put me in control and accountable for the outcome. In October, 2010, at the end of a turbulent year, filled with family drama and setbacks, I became obsessed with my book and ending the year on a high note. I invested a solid week of countless hours putting the finishing touches on the book and finally submitted it for publishing. I still get emotional remembering what that day felt like……what a great feeling…!
And, so here I am…always looking for new and exciting things to cook and still intent on getting my favorite recipes into everyone’s hearts and homes!