What is it you do?

It doesn’t take long when you meet someone new to get to the inevitable question, “What is it that you do?” For me, there is not a simple answer and for pretty silly reasons, usually makes me feel anxious. Partially, it is because I don’t like talking about myself. But, primarily, it is because I do a lot of different things depending on what path my freelance life has taken in a given week. Trying to explain this to someone I have just met usually results in me running my hand through my hair, a nervous habit pointed out to me years ago that I can’t help but notice, and now usually only adds to my nervousness. Then I say I work in food. Nine times out of ten the next question is, “are you a chef?”

My answer to that is a definite no. When I start to explain what I do, it can be hard to focus in. Often there are too many details and an inevitable jumbling of subjects. This is the point where I begin to get self-conscious. As I get older, I care less, but part of me still cares what people think. And, the thought of looking scattered and/or unfocussed, two things that I definitely am not, drives me nuts. I am organized to a fault when it comes to work, and I pride myself on my ability to put my head down and work harder than anyone else in the room on whatever is required to get the job done.

So, in a nutshell, I work in food media. Primarily, I do recipe testing, writing, and organizational work for cookbooks. But, I have been a line producer for a few TV cooking series and also do consulting work on other food related projects. Occasionally I do cook and bake for hire and I toy with the idea of a small shop. And, in the past few years I have had the awesome addition of being a stay at home mom. I slowed down a bit when my daughter was born, but I didn’t stop working.