Friday, February 25, 2011

Graphic Cookbook: A Novel Idea

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As I've said here before, the latest buzz in publishing is that graphic novels are here to stay -- and on the rise.

And according to the Strong Buzz, Amanda Cohen, the chef/owner of Dirt Candy, has signed a deal with publisher Clarkson Potter to create a cookbook disguised as a graphic novel.
Cohen recently spoke here about not really having a reason to add yet another cookbook to the already overcrowded (and extremely redundant) cookbook shelves. But here is how she describes the idea behind the cookbook as comic book:

"I had an idea for the kind of cookbook that would work for Dirt Candy: a graphic novel cookbook. I’m not sure if 'graphic novel' is the best term here since it’s a cookbook and not a novel, but that’s the best description I can come up with."

Okay, fair enough. But I think that simply calling it a "graphic cookbook" and setting the trend for others of its kind to follow -- might also work as well."

Anyway, Cohen is teaming upwith cartoonist Ryan Dunlavey, the artist behind the "Action Philosophers," a non-fiction comic book about the lives of the great philosophers. Her book is due to be released Summer 2012.

Best of luck wit this Amanda. Can't wait to pick this one up off the shelves -- and take it home.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A Saucy Cat-astrophe

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Okay, the video clip below for Ameriquest Mortgage has got to rank up there with one of the best I've seen to date. (But pulleeze forgive me for being an avid cat lover as well!) And of course, whatever you do, DON'T let this happen to your marinara sauce.

So...how was your Valentine's Day dinner? :-)

Watch:

Friday, February 04, 2011

Anybody Still Watching?

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Sadly, gone are the Food Network heydays of Emeril Lagasse and his signature, "BAM!" heard 'round the world.
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So I guess it's time now to bring out the big guns. Or at least, some of those show pitches that the network bigs might have passed on while they still had people glued to their TV screens, and mesmerized by such shows as Emeril Live or the symphonic music and pot clanging mayhem of the original Iron Chef from Japan. Bang, bang, bam...BAM.

In other words, these days it looks like the Food Network could use a little help, with a capital H.

A recent article in the New York Post reports that Food Network and HGTV ratings have fallen off in the end of 2010. In addition, the network’s quarterly declines worsened throughout the year, falling 3.3% in the second quarter and 4.5% in the third quarter, according to Nielsen numbers. Also, primetime ratings for women (the main audience for both these networks) were down last year, and Food Network's ratings among ages 18 to 49, and 25 to 54, fell 9 percent just last month.

And it comes as no surprise that the article goes on to say that Bravo, Discovery and other networks are running food-related shows -- and literally kicking Food Network square in its butt by stealing many of its viewers. Even though, some of the competition also comes from the FN‘s sister network, the Cooking Channel and the network that started it all with my beloved Julia Child back in the '60s, PBS.

So maybe it really is time for a complete programming "reality check" over at the once mighty Food Network. And instead of shows like Iron Chef, Top Chef or Kitchen Nightmares, maybe something a bit more informative to the viewing audience, with a little more quality and substance?

Um, like for instance: Maybe a few cooking shows for children, teens, and younger adults?