Why Baking A Cake Is Like Writing A Novel
- It's quite a precise process. You have to concentrate. If you mess up or forget an ingredient or make an unwise substitution, the whole thing can turn out to be a sticky horrible mess, or possibly make someone vomit.
- It's creative. After you've finished and it comes out well, you feel an enormous sense of pride.
- A cake and a novel aren't quite complete until someone else enjoys them.
- At some point, magic happens. A wet, shapeless batter rises, takes form, and becomes something wonderful.
- You should always wait for a cake and a novel to cool down before you ice/revise them.
- While you're baking or writing, your house will most likely be a complete mess.
- They both require lots of butter. What? You say you don't need butter to write a novel? Have I been doing it wrong all these years? I mean, no, of course not. You don't need butter to write a novel. How silly of me. *hides butter under desk*
Why Baking A Cake Is Not Like Writing A Novel
- If you muck up your novel, you can go back and fix it afterwards. With cakes, you're sort of stuck with the horrible sticky mess, unless you're good at emergency buttercream fixes.
- Baking a cake, you have to follow a recipe, or at least a basic process, quite strictly because there's a science to it. You can improvise, but if you leave out the baking powder, you're in trouble. With writing a novel, every once in a while, you can break the rules.
- You can bake a cake with a hangover.
- You can let your children help you bake a cake, whereas if you let them help you write your novel, it will consist entirely of explosions, aliens and princesses in tiaras.
- A cake tastes good at almost every stage of its process. But you wouldn't want to lick the bowl of the first draft of my novels. They are really, really crap before they're finished.
- Novels have a lot fewer calories than cakes. In theory. I've never eaten a novel, so I'm not 100% sure (though I do seem to consume a lot of chocolate while I'm writing one). But cakes and novels are both very nice with a cup of tea.
Any other ideas?
(Come back on Sunday to hear from Anna, who has A Fine Appreciation of Cakes.)