Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Blueberry Trick

So, Damon had a bad day at work yesterday, and expects to have a bad one today; so I made him pound cake.

The thing is, Damon's mother is the Queen of Pound Cake. She's famous for it, and not just in her family. In her church, it is assumed that she will bring pound cake to whatever it is and it will all be eaten. She makes them as big as angel-food cakes and cuts them in half to give to people, to save time. She has probably made more pound cakes than I have ever made meals, and she has perfected the process. I will never make a pound cake half as good as the ones Damon grew up eating.

But his mother is not here, and I am, so I made it. And I added blueberries. Lots and lots and lots of blueberries. Because his mother never does that, and blueberries are his favorite fruit, and they are so cheap this week that buying two pints is cheaper than buying a half-pint other times of the year, so why not?

It is easy to read the Mistresses of Literature and think "I will never do this as well as she did." (Men never make me feel this way. Just saying.) No, you won't do what Diana Wynne Jones, or Jane Austen, or Charlotte Bronte, or Ursula K. LeGuin, or Agatha Christie, or Dorothy L. Sayers, did/does as well as them. That's a given.

But you can do something slightly different as well as you can do it, and it will still be worth reading. Because you have something you do that they don't. You have some kind of metaphorical blueberries. And people will like what you do better, if you aren't stingy with them.

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