Just when I'm thinking I have way too many magazines to read, I open my Best of the South 2009 issue of the Oxford American. Filled with more things than I can take in. It's always been the kind of magazine I dip into and come back to, but it was hard not to read straight through this issue.
Like one of my favorite food writers, John T. Edge, on cheese. And there's even a pimento cheese recipe "inspired by Mary Hartwell Howorth." I go along with his recommendation on Duke's Mayonnaise, but not sure about the chives. Ditto for dried sage. But hey, I've got a pot of chives growing so maybe I'll throw in a few for good measure. Even without the recipe, the piece is full of goodies. Goat cheese from Elkmont, Alabama?
Then there's an ode to pecan pie. (I seem to be fixating on food this morning.) Aha! A crust made with butter, and a tip to keep it flaky. And I loved the essay by Marion Field, "Ode to the Perfect Coat." Wow.
You can read the entire piece by Thomas Swick online, right here. It's all about writing, from a former editor now turned freelancer. Here's a quote:
I've formulated what I call the three rules of freelancing: If you're friends with an editor, you'll get the assignment. If you know an editor, you'll get a response. If you don't know an editor, you're basically playing the lottery.
And this, about the perils of freelancing in the age of email:
No longer do you check the mail once a day; now you can check it once a paragraph.
From an interview with one of the current issue's contributors, George Singleton, in response to the question "What else should our readers know about you?"
"I may have the largest privately owned dog graveyard in America. There are at least twenty dogs buried behind my house."
Now there's an answer I don't believe I've ever heard from an interviewed writer before.
Guess I'll be renewing the Oxford American.