Friday, April 30, 2010

50 Followers Baking Blogfest

I was at the Dead Bunny Club yesterday, talking with my critique group and Sharon Axline reminded me of a cooking blogfest. I remembered reading about the Baking Blogfest on Charity Bradford's blog when she hit fifty followers, but I had no intention of entering it. I don't cook. I defrost. But Sharon was kind enough to enter the Body Language Blogfest with me last week on such short notice and I decided to return the favor. Also, I like Charity's blog. She doesn't think this blogfest sounds as exciting as a first kiss, fight, pg love or murder blogfest. She's right. It sounds way more scary to me. Here are the rules:

Write a scene where you MC bakes something, anything, good, bad, yummy, burned, anything. Have fun with it, and post it on your blog on May 1st. Bake in space, for a first date, as a cave man/woman, I don't care. Find a way to incorporate a cooking scene into your wip.

So, I've started the second book in my nautical fiction series by writing this scene. If I include this scene, it will probably be somewhere toward the end. And I don't know a lot about cooking, but I don't think my MC is baking. I hope that doesn't disqualify me. So, here is this week's blogfest. Hop on over to Charity's blog to see who else entered.

Baking Blogfest

The log clonked in the flames and orange sparks danced into the cool night air. I wrapped my cloak tighter and poked at the sizzling wood with a stick. A twig snapped and little rivers of eerie sensation flowed down my spine. The sound came from the other side of the clearing, just beyond the trees. With the sharpened stick raised like a cutlass, I melted into the thicket behind me and waited for a snarling coyote or a vicious marauder to appear.

A minute dragged by with only the pop and spit of the campfire. I stared at the other side of the clearing through the drifting smoke. The darkness made me jumpy. Maybe the memory of the Captain Treihard’s orders just before he stomped off with the flintlock made me nervous. My fingers closed over the sheath of my dirk and rode up to the smooth pearl handle. Without the flintlock, how would I fight off a mountain lion or a bear?

I crept back to the fire. If the bilge-drinking, wharf rat captain thought I’d become submissive by leaving me in the middle of nowhere without the proper weapons, he could think again. If I ended up dead because of a wolf or a lion, I’d kill him.

“It is your turn to cook supper tonight. Do it,” he had ordered. He’d tossed down an armful of weeds and stocked off into the evening shadows. At least an hour, maybe two, had passed without any sign of the preening princock. My stomach grumbled.

The weeds appeared to be wilting. A closer look revealed the yellow flowers of the dandelions looked fine, but the leaves and stocks sagged. The milkweed didn’t look very good either. My toe nudged the pack he’d left by the fire. Perhaps it wouldn’t hurt to get out the pan. That wouldn’t be like giving in, it would just be smart. Somewhere in the distance a little spring gurgled toward the river, but I’d be a fool to try to find my way to it in the dark. I pulled out the heavy, cast iron skillet, set it down, and sat on a squatty rock, willing the pan fill itself with water.

How hard could it be to cook? I could do it. And it would show my mother’s cook that I wasn’t a “dangerous accident waiting to happen.” I glanced around the clearing and up into the trees. Certainly I wouldn’t set fire to anything this time. But I still had no intention of trying to find the stream. Snakes liked streams and so did wild animals.

I moved the pan to the edge of the fire and tossed in the weeds. Some hung over the edge and began to roast. Roasted dandelion and milkweed sounded better than boiled. I jiggled the pan a little, smiling. Cooking wasn’t so hard. And maybe I’d eat it all and when the good captain came back—if he ever came back—there’d be nothing left for him and wouldn’t he be sorry.

Another twig snapped. It definitely came from the trees at the far side of the clearing. My breathing slowed and my hand slid my dirk out and gripped the handle. Another snap, this time closer. I straightened away from the fire with my dirk in one hand and the sharp stick in the other. Running wouldn’t help. A wild animal could run faster. Whatever crunched toward me no longer bothered with stealth.

The captain stepped into the clearing, the flintlock in his belt and a dead rabbit dangling from a rope. His eyes glittered in the firelight.

I dropped the stick and spread my hand over my chest, sucking in a couple of breaths. Relief converted to anger. I slipped the dirk back into the sheath, folded my arms, and glared. “So, you decided to come back."

He raised an eyebrow and sent me a cocky smile, holding up the rabbit. “I didn’t leave you. I was hunting.”

I snorted. “Well, it took you long enough.”

His gaze drifted to the fire and his smile broadened into a grin. “And I see you decided to cook after all.”

My shoulders slumped. Now he’d think he won and there’d be no peace. He’d continue to order me around like we were still on the ship. His chuckle set my teeth grinding.

“I told you it was easy,” he said. His eyes focused on the fire and his grin disappeared.

My gaze followed his to the pan just as the weeds burst into flame.


  1. LOL, I love your ending. And, no this doesn't disqualify you. I should have said cooking instead of baking, so this is great!

    I'm glad you joined us last minute! You have nice flow to your writing and I enjoyed reading this.

  2. Charity,

    Wonderful! Thanks so much for hosting this blogfest (and for not disqualifying me). It actually got me started on the next book. I owe you a great, big, bloghug.

  3. I like it and I chuckled at the end. Good scene - I like how she doesn't want to give in. I want to read more.

    I'd love for you to come check out mine when you get a chance.

  4. I loved it! Poor thing burning the weeds! Hmm now is she going to have to cook that rabbit. OOOOOO I can't wait for the next book!!!!!

  5. Okay, I think you win for the least delicious sounding dish in the blogfest! But a win's a win, so don't sweat it!
    Actually is the MC a boy or girl? I was thinking boy.
    Sounds like a fun read!

  6. Why lapetus999, you charming scoundrel. You'll turn my head with those types of compliments. :)

  7. *laughter* oh, Melanie! i just can't wait to read some longer stuff from you! love your style!

  8. Melanie, this was great. I actually laughed out loud when he showed up with the rabbit because I was thinking 'And what's she going to do with that!'

  9. Nice entry.

    Lately I defrost, too, even though I like to cook when I'm rested. Working a full time job, I'm usually not.

    My heroine in my baking entry doesn't cook much, either, but she made a "special" birthday cake for her friend so I put that snippet here:

  10. Squeaky,

    I want to see you enter the next blogfest!


    I haven't a clue what she is going to do with it. It almost makes me want to keep writing it just to find out. LOL


    Thanks for the visit. Actually, I really enjoyed your entry. Great imagination.

  11. Hahaha, you got a dead bunny in your manuscript! I'm positively giddy that you've started your next book and am looking forward to critique group where I shall baste your buttons with compliments :-)

  12. I worked hard to get a dead bunny into the WIP. We'll see what happens.

  13. haha! That was so much fun :) I loved the MC's voice. And that last line made me LOL :)

  14. Rebecca

    Thanks. I fear my MC will only make things harder on herself... (Just saying.)

    I liked your entry, too.

  15. That was fun, particularly for those of us who have seen you personally cook... But, what's the "Dead Bunny Club?" Given your other recent blogs about your abhorrence to wildlife, you have me a bit concerned here...

  16. You mean they didn't bring a portable generator and microwave with them? What were they thinking? ;)

    Nicely done, good lady. Wry humor and a solid sense of characterization. Good job!

  17. Jars,

    We miss yours too. Time to get back to the Dead Bunny Club.


    The Dead Bunny Club is my critique group and it is a long story as to how it came to be named. And I like wildlife okay, but they don't like me.


    So you've seen me camp? (Okay, maybe not a microwave, but a blender is a must.)

  18. Hooray! I'm so excited that you've started #2. Wonderful scene. Of course. Only saying.

  19. Dale,

    Just saying. Just saying. Not "only saying". HA. Nice try though, bless your heart. (grin)


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