As of June 30, my beloved Food Riot has closed its doors. The site remains live for a little bit longer – so if you missed it, head back over there and gobble up all that good food writing before it disappears for good.
Since I started writing in an online platform, it’s been about food. My first gig with this sort of writing was in 2010 when my friend Jesse gave me a humble weekly column called My CSAcation, where I wrote about what to do with a CSA haul. And it blossomed from there. I began to blog. I did reviews, I became a food editor. And then, there was Food Riot.
I grew as a writer for Food Riot. I learned to dig into different types of writing by reading the posts written by my fellow Rioters. I cheered with them when particularly great posts happened – ones that made you look at your food a bit longer than usual. These were our victories. This was what our Riot was for.
When Food Riot announced it would close, it was a turning point. I was writing 12 posts a month for Food Riot – I had wandered away from my blog, I was all food, all the time. It was part of who I was. When people at parties asked me what I did for a living, I said I was a writer, and I led with the fact that I wrote for a food magazine called Food Riot.
It was an identity shift, a bittersweet moment. A chapter was ending. Was I ready?
I was, in a way. And it’s allowed me to transition into a new and exciting chapter – I’m now a contributor for Food Riot’s mother site, Book Riot, a fantastic online magazine that delves into books the way that Food Riot delved into food. I’m reading tons – I have to – and it’s allowing me to really immerse myself in books, and the literary world.
I’m writing a novel. I plan to continue in a career that involves writing novels and short stories and essays. And by being fortunate enough to work for a magazine that focuses on the reading and discussion of novel and stories and essays (not to mention comics and poetry), I’m more fully immersing myself in a new level of my writerly life. And I’m excited.
Petrified, at times. And totally intimidated. I mean, let’s be realistic. But also excited.
I am still a food writer – I have been for years – but this change allows me to take a step back and see what I’m about these days. To turn down the volume and listen to myself, to my appetite. I’m hungry, I can tell you that. And now I can determine what that particular hunger wants.
Over the next few Fridays, I’ll be rerunning my favorite posts I did for Food Riot, before the site goes dark and rolls up the sidewalks. It’s a chance for me to revisit my favorite moments from the year that I was writing for Food Riot, and I’m excited to share that trip down memory lane with you.
And if you’re not familiar with Book Riot, make sure you check them out. We get into some fun stuff over there.