Food blogging with Steven Shaw: online journalism pioneer, author and James Beard Award-winning food critic
Blogging has taken the worldwide web by storm, leaving the publishing industry to question, "What is the future of print media?"
I was honored to have been invited to sit in on the first of six "Food Blogging with Steven Shaw" classes at the International Culinary Center. Virtual food writing has come a long way since Mr. Shaw began his website, www.egullet.org, in the late 1990's; and even further since I conceptualized The Lunch Belle in the summer of 2007. Having taught myself how to create/design my blog, I wasn't really aware of the vast array of food-centric resources and how-to courses available. How naive of me!
The six week course, which lasts for about two hours on Thursday evenings, is perfect for those who wish to start/expand a food blog, but haven't done so or proceeded due to lack of time, confidence, skill, etc. Mr. Shaw teaches students from step "one" to step "done," using www.wordpress.com as his platform of choice. In this first class, we learned:
- Tidbits of the history of print media and how it's rapidly morphing in to web-based media
- Just how easy it is to procure your own blog on a free platform, such as www.wordpress.com
- The most successful blogs are updated daily in order to maintain/pique readers' interest
Prior to our first meeting, Mr. Shaw asked that the class bring their cameras. L'Ecole's manager (who also happens to be a sommelier) prepared a sherry tasting for us, where we were encouraged to take pictures. As you can see, photography goes hand-in-hand with food blogging.
Over the course of the six week sessions, Mr. Shaw has lined up visits from some of food industry's "who's who," including: photographer Melissa Hom, Alan Richman, and Adam Roberts. Additionally, students receive one-on-one email diaglogue and critique with Mr. Shaw between classes. While the course is pricey (think $795), those who are very serious about getting in to food blogging should look at this fee as an investment towards their future. Can a price-tag be put on receiving first-hand instruction and insight from some of the culinary industry's greatest leaders?
In conclusion, I was very impressed with Mr. Shaw's enthusiasm, instruction, knowledge, and engagement. I cannot wait to virtually follow his students on their journey towards food blogging fame and achievement!