The book will contain over 100 full-color, beautiful photographs. The photographer, Signe Birck, has photographed award-winning cookbooks such as Chef Ronny Emborg's recent book The Wizards.
THE DREAM“You can make a wish, or you can make it happen…”
Writing a cookbook has been my dream for the past 10 years. Throughout my career, I’ve worked as a private chef, recipe tester, food stylist, and journalist, but above all else, I’ve had one burning desire on my heart: to inspire people to cook simple, healthy meals, and to spend time with friends and family around the table. I was fortunate enough to grow up eating nearly every meal around the yellow table, and it was there that I developed my deep love for community, conversation, and good food.
I started The Yellow Table blog in
2011 as a place to share my recipes and stories, with the hopes that it would
one day become a cookbook. But as you may or may not know, cookbook deals
aren’t exactly thrown in your lap – unless you happen to be a famous chef, a famous
person, or a really huge blogger. (None of which describe me!)
After years of waiting and making excuses on why I wasn’t qualified to do this, or why it would never work, a lightbulb went off in my head this summer and I realized: “You can do this!” I decided to start taking baby steps towards that dream, and it’s amazing the outpouring of support and encouragement that have come my way.
THE COOKBOOK DIARIESLast October, I announced on my blog that I was going to create a cookbook. I committed to a 6-month project where I would develop, test, and shoot 100 recipes – with the help of my good friend, photographer Signe Birck – and blog about the process. I had no idea what the outcome would be, but I knew I wanted to at least try. Signe and I shot everything in my 6th floor walkup apartment (luckily it has great natural light!) and did all the styling ourselves, borrowing props from ABC Carpet & Home, and borrowing wooden flooring samples from PID Floors.
Needless to say, there was a lot of hauling things up and down the stairs, and walking through all weather conditions with bags of groceries. It was truly a labor of love, but we did it, and I’m thrilled with what we’ve created! It’s been amazing to see how people have wanted to get involved – all of my recipe testers are blog readers who volunteered after reading one of my posts, and I found Katie (my designer) after posting that I was looking for someone to design the book.
SELF-PUBLISHINGI decided to self publish for two reasons:
- After talking to several publishers and agents, I was
told that if I got a publishing deal, the book wouldn’t come out until Spring
2016. It was so hard for me to imagine creating all of the recipes and photos,
and then waiting two years to see it as a book. By self-publishing, I can have the book out to you all this
- I wanted creative control. I love the photography in the book so much, I wanted to be able to hand-pick a designer to work with the aesthetic that Signe I had already created. (And Katie is the perfect person for the job!!)
That may seem like a lot of money, but essentially it just
covers our costs for the first print run of 1500 copies. That breaks down to be
$30 per book, plus warehousing and shipping costs, and Kickstarter fees.
Where’s the money going? Largely to printing costs and book materials, as well as to help us recoup the costs we’ve already poured into photography, design work, editing, and groceries for recipe-testing and shooting.
Basically if we raise $50,000 we can print 1500 books and break even. If we can raise more than our goal, we can print more books! Ultimately I’d love to print 3000 or even 5000, and see more and more people getting in the kitchen, and connecting around the table.
Risks and challenges
Any project has its risks, but luckily for us, the bulk of the work has already been done: photography, recipes, and design. There are still some tweaks to make (editing of text and photos), but mostly what remains is the printing.
There are always possibilities of delays with printing, but we are working with Worzalla to have these books printed and distributed by November. Once we hand over the book's PDF files to them later this summer, we have just a 6-week turnaround to print!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (42 days)