Hi, I’m Jenna and I am a food blogger.
It’s crazy, really, when I slow down and really think about the steps that have led me to where I am today. I live in Northern California. I have a book coming out. I write a blog for a living! I am my own boss.
In one of my very favorite memoirs, A Strong West Wind by Gail Caldwell, the author poses the question “how do we become who we are?”
I wanted to be a food blogger long before I even knew what a food blogger was…long before I even knew was a “blog” was. Growing up, I had this passion for life, for food and for writing. I had no idea how to combine what I loved and even less of an idea of how to make a living from doing it. I just knew that I never really fit in with a normal schedule and was always striving for the next big adventure. I hated settling and hated mediocrity even more.
I graduated college from The College of Charleston in 2007 with a joint degree in English and Creative Writing because I felt most at home in my small writing workshops, where I could write my stories and poems about whatever I wanted in a supportive setting and get feedback for the first time. I didn’t have a blog in college. I didn’t even know what a blog was in college. I was focused on my Shakespeare and Milton and planned to travel to France right after I graduated to figure everything out.
In Paris I totally fell in love with food. With Patricia Wells tucked in my backpack, I made my way to every single pastry shop on the Left Bank. For the first time, I felt completely at home with these people who were also in love with food like I was. The French women were beautiful and, unlike American women, less focused on rigid workouts and diet products and more focused on living the good life by actually celebrating their meals. I had just turned twenty two and felt like I had been set free in a whole new culture and life.
I immediately applied to culinary school when I got home from France because it just seemed like the right thing to do. I wanted to learn everything about classical French cooking so I could share the celebration and love of food with others. When I was in school, I started a food blog. I had two readers (my parents) and a tiny beat up point and shoot camera. I didn’t know a thing about blogging, didn’t know a thing about the internet and didn’t know a thing about Foodbuzz, BlogHer or any other way to produce revenue. I started a blog because I loved to write and thought it was fun. (I actually started a poetry blog when I was an undergraduate but it only lasted two weeks so this was my second attempt)
Three years later and I’m still blogging my heart out every day. As part of Foodbuzz’s Project Food Blog’s first challenge, we are supposed to answer the question what defines you as a food blogger and why should you be the next food blog star.
My answer? Because I’m passionate and driven. I’m not saying you have to go to culinary school to be a food writer, but I did because I wanted to be the best food writer out there. I wanted to know everything about food so I could write about it to the best of my potential and share my love of it with others. I love writing recipes that inspire people to get back to the kitchen, recipes that make people feel good and proud of themselves. I also love sharing my adventures in hopes I can inspire others to follow their dreams and take big risks that often lead to big rewards.