As a writer, I feel like something of a chef. And I like that idea.
My stories come from recipes of thoughts.
My thoughts come from my past, present and future ingredients of my experiences.
I test them, taste them, add a little seasoning, and taste them again.
I've thrown out entire meals that took months to prepare.
I will not serve up what did not become precisely what I meant it to be.
There are pieces of recipes jotted on the backs of receipts and books, even in eyeliner on the gum wrappers.
Aperitifs to set the mood and stir the appetite. They are either the easiest or most difficult to create.
Perhaps and appetizer to prepare the palate for what's to come.
And then, the main dish. Spicy or smooth; forbidden, maybe even wild and gamey.
Everything else has mattered, but here is where I've put in what had to be ripped out of me.
Then dessert. Like the best cigarette you've ever had after the best release of the most intense passion.
And some digestif. A reward for joining me at my table. Something to let the guest sigh with contentment.
The readers - my guests, they will be back for more. If I have earned it, there will be a clamor for seats at my future tables.
When one story is finished, its stains and scraps still with the reader, I go and prepare to write again.
I will browse the aisles of my memories to search out new seasonings to pair with the staples stashed at the ready: desire, perseverance, suffering and madness.
Writing feeds hungry souls and satisfies the cravings of the mind.
What I do matters.
What I do is real.