The Story Behind the Story Behind the Story
My name is Lucy Mercer. I’m a writer, a photographer, a mom, a wife, a daughter, a friend, in no particular order. Or maybe that is a particular order because words are always with me, a phrase or sentence or paragraph continually working itself out in my brain’s endless stream of prose.
A Cook and Her Books blog sprang into being on a hot July day in 2008 as a way to share recipes and live out the fantasy that I wrote for Southern Living magazine. That afternoon spent writing while my girls played outside was the beginning of what I think of as my real career. Up until then, I had an infrequently used journalism degree and a steady gamut of bookselling jobs.
This blog’s name can be explained this way: the “Cook” because, while I’m not a chef, I love to make good food for my family. “Her Books,” of course, for the packed-out bookshelves and teetering stacks in nearly every corner of my home. (The cookbook collection is around 500 books.)
When I started A Cook and Her Books, my family was young and we were at home all the time, so the food stories came easily. In those early food blogging days, I participated in a year of themed cooking challenges at Salon.com (you’ll see more of these stories in the archives). You can also find my work at Food52. And here’s what I discovered when I began telling my stories: what happens outside in the garden influenced what happened inside in my kitchen. Writers call this “telling the story behind the story,” and the more I wrote, I realized that the story behind the story behind the story was what truly interested me.
Serendipitously, I now have a full-time career in garden writing and I feel like I’ve found my tribe. Part of that tribe is my local Master Gardener volunteer group. (I’m a certified Master Gardener Extension volunteer, class of 2018).
Join me in this journey as I tell a few stories and share some pictures along the way.
The pictures are my own, unless attributed to another contributor. I’m a competent, but lazy photographer and while I occasionally break out a Canon with nifty 50, my iPhone 11 ProMax usually does the job.
The conversation springing from A Cook and Her Books takes place on social media and in my monthly newsletter. Follow A Cook and Her Books on Facebook and Instagram to learn about what’s growing and what’s cooking at my house.
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And one more thing: if you’re interested in my freelance expertise in gardening and cooking, please reach out through LinkedIn.