The most frequent question I’d get, over my eleven years of being The Amateur Gourmet, was name-related. “How long can you keep being an amateur?” Or, variations on the theme: “Are you still an amateur after writing a cookbook?” “Are you still an amateur after making Bouillabaisse?” “Are you still an amateur if you’ve been doing porn for half a decade?” (Ignore that last one.)
At some point, I figured, I’d graduate to my name–like a David Lebovitz or a Michael Ruhlman–but then the blog felt so permanent, so fixed, that rebranding it and relabeling it felt like changing your 11 year-old child’s name from “Sarah” to “Bathsheba.” Meanwhile, my professional life began to shift a few months ago when I threw my hat into the TV-writing ring and got hired to write on a new ABC comedy called “The Real O’Neals.” Staying under the “food blog” umbrella felt too narrow for my new life; also, I was pretty bored by the pre-set expectations of a traditional food blog.
What I craved, more than anything, was a place to be myself. And lo and behold: here we are. A new blog, a new venture, with my name right there in the title. What does it mean? What will it be? That remains to be seen. But I’m feeling very excited about it, and that’s a good thing. So bid farewell to the amateur me, and say “hey” to the actual me. It’s nice to meet you, again.