Grief and Gratitude, Under a Sky So Blue

I stared at my closet and wondered. What do you wear to the funeral of your favorite cousin, more like a brother, really, but you hadn’t seen him in nearly 20 years? On top of it, what does a person pack to go home to a hometown about which you’ve penned a book yet had not been there to visit in just as long? This is where I found myself on April 30th, 2014, one year ago today. Richard “Richey” Fridline was one of those … [Read more...]

Hungry for Words Food Writing Boot Camp in Washington, D.C. March 21-22

I've partnered with acclaimed independent bookstore Politics & Prose and The Writer's Center in D.C. to offer my weekend-long introduction to food writing camp on March 21-22, 2015. Known as "Hungry for Words," this workshop covers a lot of ground in two jam-packed days. We start with a brief look into the history of food writing and its most noted contributors, then shift into a myriad of fast-paced discussion on … [Read more...]

The Relative Value of Stuff (Giveaway)

In my 20s, I edited a print magazine about the online world titled Internet Underground. It launched in 1995, a time when newscasters would cite web addresses by slowly spelling out, "Go to h-t-t-p-colon-back slash-back-slash-w-w-w-dot-company-dot-com-backslash-information-blackslash..." and painfully over-pronounce the "ts" in Internet. The final step in my editorial hiring process was simple: if you could figure out … [Read more...]

Burnt Toast Makes You Sing Good: Excerpt, Tour Dates and Special Thank You Gift!

I'm thrilled to offer a sneak peek at my new book, Burnt Toast Makes You Sing Good: A Memoir of Food & Love from an American Midwest Family (Viking/Penguin). The book has just gone on sale and this is one of the few places you'll be able to get an excerpt.  In this first chapter, my Irish and Swedish parents from Michigan travel across the U.S. to go work in my uncle's Italian restaurant in San Francisco's Mission … [Read more...]

Tickets on Sale for the fabulous ‘Burnt Toast Makes You Sing Good’ release party

Viking/Penguin and  Elliott Bay Book Co. are thrilled to announce the official launch party for Burnt Toast Makes You Sing Good, by author Kathleen Flinn (that’s me!). Join us August 14th atop the Swedish Cultural Center overlooking Seattle's beautiful Lake Union. Take in sweeping views of the city and mountains, hang out with Seattle’s culinary and literary crowd, enjoy food, music and entertainment of the 50s, 60, and … [Read more...]

How to Write a Book Proposal in Four Weeks

This summer, I'll be teaching a four-week Master Class at the Richard Hugo House. Normally, I focus on food writing but so much of what can be said about food writing and the process of story and book development applies to general non-fiction as well. When trying to sell fiction, the industry expects a completed manuscript. With non-fiction, about 95% of titles are sold via a book proposal. A good proposal is part … [Read more...]

Kitchen Shelf: Stephanie Stiavetti

On a hectic day, I sometimes slip quietly over to Stephanie Stiavetti's blog, TheCulinaryLife.com, a repository for all things comfort food related, to read her musings on life as she spins a recipe for corn on the cob or cassoulet. Her first book is Melt: The Art of Mac and Cheese, co-authored with the wonderful food writer and recipe developer, Garrett McCord. I'm also a fan of his popular food blog, Vanilla Garlic, … [Read more...]

Kitchen Shelf: Kathleen’s Favorite Soup Books

Campbell's was right: Soup is good food. But it's even better for you if you make it yourself. If you’re craving more creamy, hearty, vegetable-y happiness by the bowlful, here are some of my favorite soup cookbooks. Be sure to check out my post, How to Make Soup out of (Almost) Anything. Splendid Soups Talk about hearty. James Peterson’s robust 600-plus-pager is a soup lit classic. With almost 300 recipes– from simple … [Read more...]