where the writers are
Tea for Thursday

So, it's not Tuesday and my tea pairing may be lackluster, but here we are. I've finished my novel and begun the arduous process of submitting it to middle grade fiction agents. So far three have requested more material and the hunt continues.

I'd like to tell you that I'm cautiously optimistic. I'd like to tell you that I'm stoically enjoying the process and confident in the outcome.

But I'd be lying. I'm a bit of a wreck.

It's not because I don't feel I've written well. I did my very best. It's because I care too much about the outcome. This has been my dream since I was a young girl, to have a book in print. I'm attached to the dream. Enough about me and my book drama. We're here for a nice tea pairing and someone else's book drama. This week's edition is all about end of spring cooking and the mountains. 

I've recently finished Volume One of Tender - you can read about it at - http://www.nigelslater.com/tender.asp. It's not literary fiction. It's a marvelous gardening and cooking book with lustrous photos. It has the best gardening journals, ingredient information, and  romantic descriptions of life in the garden and kitchen. Don't be put off by the fact that it's British, this man can cook. If you grow food or cook at all, it's the best. I would pair it with a bit of mint tea - fresh from the garden.

Also I've finished The Blackberry Farm Cookbook recently. It's great, but I'm not as keen on the high price tag ($65ish dollars). You can easily find a similar experience on their website -  http://www.blackberryfarm.com/friends-of-the-farm-farm-stories/pass-the-peas for free. Lots of great backwoods recipes for really rural treats. Think muscadine jam, bourbon braised pork belly, and blackbery jam. Nicely paired with a blackberry and white tea iced blend, something very old South. 

Following the same theme, I recently finished the famous Ball canning book - http://www.freshpreserving.com/home.aspx. It's a simple book with lots of food safety tips and recipes. A good beginner's guide to the lost art of canning. Pair it with chamomile and lavender tea, simple and very down-home. 

In case you can't tell by these selections, the garden's been a refuge for me this spring during book-related stress. There's nothing quite like holding a warm, milky cuppa while wandering a bright rainbow chard patch - the chartreuse spikes like stilettos, or peering at green cherry tomatoes, or eagerly awaiting the soft, billowy squash blossoms I'll fill with herbed goat cheese. It's good to linger in the sunshine before the heat takes hold. To experience a world not on the page for a short time. 

Wishing you all a cool and pleasent summer, A. Vose.