Wednesday, June 1, 2016


Are you a picky eater? Or find one thing you like at a restaurant and stick to it so you don't end up paying good money for something you dislike?


I'm usually that way when eating out - prefer what I know I'll like. I'm no skinny Minny, but I have a small stomach (not to be confused with the outer size of my ample belly) and rarely eat even half my meal. I take it home, and usually my kid or husband get to it before I do. With all the traveling I'm doing, sometimes I just want to try something different, even if it means a waste of food since its hard to store for a second night, and the male appetites are not around to scarf it down.

The picture above is from a meal at Applebee's in Idaho Falls; grilled salmon in a maple-mustard glaze over a bed of steamed spinach, sides of broccoli and baked potato. I didn't eat my usual salad and rolls, no appetizer - unless you count the specialty cosmo I had. Can't remember what that cosm was specifically, but it was fruity, pink, and so delicious I wanted three more. But I was a good girl and had the Reisling when dinner came. I love sweet (adult) drinks that count as appetizer, desert, and of course, alcohol. So, yeah, I was starving (I don't eat much while working/driving) and this was just the right portion.

Was it expensive? Hell yeah! About three days of my self-allotted meal expense. So glad I enjoyed it so much I ate it all. (still burping as I write this)

Are your book reading habits this way too? You find an author in a genre you enjoy, read the book cover to cover, and move along to the  next book in the series (or newest single) because you don't want to throw away good money on a new author you may not like? Yeah, me too. Hmm, I wonder if you can discern a person's book reading habits by studying their dinner preferences? Good marketing tool perhaps if so . . .

I digress (or digest). Even in today's markets where books are often free, or so close you don't count the pennies, its hard to just click that download button. Or if you (I) do download on that impulse whim, how long does it take to actually open the book and read it? I have books on my Kindle that have been queued on the carousel for three years or more - books I know are in my customary reading genre but are just - - new, untried.

Do you read a book cover to cover? Back-of-the-book Blurb; dedication; author note, chapter titles and summaries; index and next book preview? Does your extended reading vary from book to book, author to author?

Food for thought. Perhaps this chewy post will inspire you to write an article for the Insecure Writers Support Group Newsletter?

This hastily put together post is brought to you by the INSECURE WRITERS SUPPORT GROUP, host Ninja Captain Alex J Cavanaugh, and this months co-hosts: Murees Dupe, Alexia Chamberlynn, Chemist Ken, and Heather Gardner. If you are new to IWSG click here for the group norms and sign up list.

Speaking of THE LIST; it appears my name was dropped off during my two month blog hiatus. My first instinct was to instantly rectify that, but then I paused. I've been blogging less and less over the last year, and do not always have the time to visit all/most/many of the participating blogs (there are hundreds). In the beginning of this monthly meeting-fest I attempted most of the list (frequently getting to all), then it grew very large and I visited most of the bloggers I know/follow with a few strangers thrown in. Over the last year I've noted that I consult my blog roll, take several days to click on everyone who has posted on the first Wednesday of the month - regardless of whether it is an IWSG post - and am rarely adventurous enough to explore a new name. Yes its me, not YOU.

Is it allowable, do you think, to post for this (or any) group as time allows without actually committing to a sign up list? Do You ONLY visit blogs on the List on IWSG day? Or do you visit only known bloggers that  you follow? Or some combination? Do you visit ONLY bloggers that comment on your post first, reciprocating if someone takes the chance on your blog first?

To answer my own last question (Ghads, where did all these questions come from?); I visit everyone I can think of - starting with my blog roll - regardless of whether you have recently (or ever) left a comment on one of my blog posts. I am - as time allows - that kind of friendly, lol.

If I don't see you until this weekend its because I'm on the road right now and not always able to get a good wifi connection at a hotel. I'll be spending two nights in Salt Lake City, and wouldn't ya know, one of those days falls on Wednesday June 1, which I will be spending with fellow blogger Michael Offutt. Be sure to stop by his blog and ask him how much fun I am to pal around with.

“Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.” (biblehub)


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

As long as you are visiting some of the members, that's good. I try and visit all of my blogger buddies today whether they post for it or not. (Yeah, that's a lot of people.) Sign back up.
When it comes to food, I find a favorite, I stick with it. With books, I'm more apt to explore. And if I'm not into it by the second or third chapter, I put it down, no matter who it is.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I visit mostly those I know. Everyone is posting and I just don't have the time to visit a lot of new ones.

I'll try anything new once. I'm already limited by being a vegan.

Yolanda Renée said...

I'm a picky eater too, but yes, if I find a restaurant I stick to it, then they go and do something stupid like hire a new cook, and we're back at the beginning. :)
Still, it's great to find a good meal when you're out and about.
I'm cutting back too, on the blogging, but the IWSG will always be part of the routine, for you too, I'm sure. Add yourself back, besides isn't the next anthology about to be announced?

Pat Hatt said...

I'm a picky eater because I have to be. Dumb allergies. Books I can go anywhere. I try to get to many indeed, usually do at my feed haha go ocd.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

There are so many friends out there who post, and my free time as a blood courier is so limited that is frustrating. We just have to visit those we can and hope the others are friends enough to understand.

Michael Offutt, Phantom Reader said...

Applebee's in good ole Idaho Falls. That's right downtown. I used to live there. I'll have to give you a few more restaurants to check out in I.F. that are more affordable. North Highway Cafe is pretty cheap. So is Tom's Gyro's and Burgers.

Nicki Elson said...

That is such a great analogy. So, like, as an author, I've got to whip up something tantalizing enough to woo readers over to give me a try. One of these days, one of these days.

On IWSG day, I start w/ returning visits to commenters at my place and look up my regulars. If I venture beyond that, I usually click over to blogs from comments at other IWSGerses places. I rarely go off the actual hop list.

Olga Godim said...

Your food description is so yummy, I'm salivating.
As for visiting other blogs: I do much more on the posting days than on other days. Exceptions are the blogs I subscribe to, like yours. I visit them whenever I get an email about the new post. Like this one.

cleemckenzie said...

I try to get around to everyone each week, but there are times that's just not possible. As to taking home those restaurant leftovers, that's one of my favorite things to do. I often deliberately over-order, so I'll have something I didn't cook to eat for a change.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

You asked a lot of questions. I can't remember them all.:)
About the food. I tend to stay with something I know I like. I'm not the adventuresome type.
About the visits. I try to visit my friends a couple times a week. I also like to visit new people, and need to do more of that.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Donna - glad Alex said 'sign up again'... you can make it short after all - just a note.

I enjoy my food, but if I'm out I do eat more carefully ... and so far I haven't started taking food home - but then I've no-one to feed but me! Sometimes in a new place - we don't know the size of the meal ... and that can make a difference ...

I try and meet new people .. but not doing the A-Z this year I sort of slacked off .. but I do visit quite a few bloggers ...

Take care and enjoy the job - cheers Hilary

Jeffrey Scott said...

Yes, I do tend to stick with what I know. Food, book, blog, what have you? As for my visits to IWSG, I first and foremost visit everyone who has left on a comment on mine first. Those are my first stops. After that, I visit every co-host. From there, I move on to a core-set I have worked up to in my feedly. When all this is said and done, and if I have time, I will go to the listy and find people I don't know. I don't always get to it, but I do try. Even if I don't get to a dozen new IWSG'ers, I do get to at least a dozen blogs if not more.

Diane Burton said...

I love going to one restaurant and I always order the same thing. When the food comes, I ask for a box and divide my meal in half. If I didn't, it's so good I'd eat the whole thing. Then Hubs would have to roll me out to the car. The portion is HUGE. With books, if it doesn't grab me in the 1st couple of chapters, I move on. Life is too short to spend it on mediocre or bad books. Not that the books are bad. Just not my taste.

Stacy McKitrick said...

I am a picky eater. And I take forever to order at a new-to-me restaurant. Just because it says pot roast, doesn't mean it's the kind I like, you know?

I'm not so sure I'm a picky reader. Yeah, I have my favorite, auto-buy authors, but I also try authors that have been recommended to me or I found on a blog or I got the book free at a convention and it looks interesting. I just have soooooo many books, I wonder when I'll be able to read them all!

Arlee Bird said...

So much speaking to me in this post--or as food goes, my wife. I can't eat as much as I used to and typically don't finish my meals. Certain left-overs I will bring home while others I know I won't eat. My wife is the kind of person like you describe who will typically eat the same thing at a restaurant. She'd be content if I just fixed white rice and beans every single night. I on the other hand tend to be very adventurous food wise and I like to try different things.

I do tend to binge read (or when it comes to movies watch many films in a series or of a genre successively). When I read a book it's literally cover to cover down to acknowledgments and copyright page. Rarely do I just toss a book aside because I can't continue for some reason. I like the immersion book experience and if the book is good then I'll seek out the other books the author has written.

As far as the #IWSG, I rarely visit from the list. Maybe a few blogs on rare months, but mostly I'm always trying to reciprocate to those who have left comments on my blog posts. That takes plenty of time and a good many of them do post for #IWSG.

Arlee Bird
A to Z Challenge Co-host
Tossing It Out

Loni Townsend said...

For me, it depends on how much time I have. I first prioritize whoever has posted on my post, then I visit people who have visited me in the past, then I hit up some who never return my visit (like, ever), and then go hunting out new people if I have time remaining.

Hey! I was just in Idaho Falls over Memorial Day weekend for my cousin's baby shower. My husband and I took the opportunity to drop the kids on the grandparents and stay at the Destinations Inn. Highly recommended. With all your driving, are you coming Boise way?

dolorah said...

Alex: You and your clones are awesome :)

LDiane: that is limiting. So glad you choose to visit me often :)

Yolanda: ah, the dreaded change cooks; ruins the food almost every time, lol.

Pat: I have food allergies too and always have to ask what is in my food when out. Can't be too careful.

Roland: you say true!

Michael: awesome, I starting to like experimenting. Sorry I had to cancel our fun.

Nicki: loved your continuing analogy! We sound like we're in good company.

Olga: you subscribe to my blog?! How awesome, thank you.

cLee: very few things do not do well in the fridge. I love having lunch leftovers :)

Bev: it was just one of those nights, lol. Glad to see someone is still checking out new blogs.

Hilary: you do get around better than most, I think :) I love your traveling posts, the ones about food are very delicious.

Jeffery: well done!! Thank you for visiting me - first :)

Diane: When I eat all my dinner I need a wheel barrow to haul me out, lol. With having the Kindle read to me, it is easier to just turn off the book and turn on the radio. Sadly.

Stacy: Oh, I know what you mean about food not always being what is expected. I've had that problem lots. My hubby will eat anything; not me.

Arlee: Your wife and I would get along just fine at the restaurant, while you and I talk books and movies. I love bingeing, when I have the time.

Loni: I remember those kid breaks; now I'm the place they get left, lol. Yep, I go through Boise once a month. We'll have to make a plan to meet somewhere for lunch.

Brandon Ax said...

Well I actually have a problem when it comes to books. I tend to just randomly buy them. It is to the point my wife steers me clear of bookstores. Now when it comes to reading them I am not so good. I have close to a bookshelf full of need to read.

Anonymous said...

I had to drop off the IWSG because I didn't think I'd be able to visit enough people on a Wednesday because of work. I do miss it though.

I tend to stick the same authors out of habit. Then I'll try a new one and stick with them for awhile until I find another new one.

Gwen Gardner said...

I only blog once per month--a necessity if I want to get any real writing done--so it's always IWSG day. Since I have very little free time, I reply to comments on my blog, then visit everyone who has visited me. Sometimes in the course of my return visits I'll see someone in the comment list who I haven't "seen" in a while and I'll go visit them. Just trying to keep in touch with the community the best I can because I do enjoy you all so much!

P.S. you should re-sign up. I don't think the rules are so strict that anybody minds. I got dropped once too.

Robin said...

I have so many books on my kindle that I know I'll never get to them all.

I think that sometimes we need to be choosier about what we download.

This is excellent food for thought. Pun totally intended.

Unknown said...

Donna - Yes, yes, and yes. I'm the most boring eater known to man and go out once a week with a friend, always to the same place, and 90% order the same thing. Books are really a personal taste. kind of like music. Not like movies. It seems most people agree if a movie was awesome, but books are wholly another thing. I have a few beloved authors, although I'm so busy I'm lucky if I get to read 1 of their books every 2 years or so. Yes - tag along with the IWSG or the A-Z or anything you want. There are no net police. Write what interests you and visit as you can. Enjoy yourself! There's too little of that going on in this day and age.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I must admit that I am a very picky eater :) as all of my friends and family tell me. And I am also VERY picky with books. Hmmm...i guess I am a picky person in general lol.

Tamara Narayan said...

I order the same thing at restaurants too, but every once in a blue moon, I'll try something new. If I find a new author I like, I will read everything they have written. Finding Liane Moriarty (Big Little Lies) was a happy, happy day. I do have some things on my Kindle that I haven't tried, mostly because they were won in blog contests and are not in genres I'm passionate about. I have gotten a few chapters in on several of these and realized they were not my cup of tea.

On ISWG day, I go to the list and start visiting names I recognize. After a couple of hours, I'm burnt out because I read the entry slowly, I look around their page for publications and check those out, and then I try to leave a significant comment. I think I did somewhere between 20 and 30 this month. After that I will reciprocate comments as they trickle in. Co-hosting is a good way to visit unfamiliar and new folks on the list. There is no way I'd try to do the whole thing.

VR Barkowski said...

I detest fast food, which probably reflects my reading tastes. I read established authors who I can depend on to deliver story and quality writing. Unless it’s a really buzzy book, I stay away from unknowns. I’m currently reading The Girls by Emma Cline, a debut that received a 7-figure advance. Seven figures is pretty buzzy for a debut.

Although I always reciprocate, I don’t visit many new blogs these days. Every once in a while, I realize I haven’t touched bases with an old blogging buddy, and I’m immediately there and checking in, but I only blog twice a month.

VR Barkowski

Cherie Reich said...

Mmm, that does sound like a good meal. I like to try new things, but I will often order what I either know I like or am pretty certain I'll like. That isn't the same as my reading. If it's cheap or free, I'm much more likely to sample before ordering more. Of course, with books I'll never finish them all. Just not enough time, but I also don't keep reading if I'm not in love with the book.

A Beer for the Shower said...

I think you're onto something with that whole culinary taste and book taste thing. I love all kinds of books, and I love all kinds of food, and I'll read/eat anything at least once. And just as I can appreciate fine dining/fine literature, I also sometimes just want to eat junk... or read, I guess, the McDonald's of books.

Denise Covey said...

Boy what a thought-provoking post Donna! What was in that salmon, lol! I'm the world's least picky eater. I'd starve on my travels if I was fussy. That said, I go to restaurants a lot and have my faves at each restaurant, but no, I'm not afraid to try new food...or drinks. Like you, I like the sweet variety like champagne etc.

Books? Well I do read my fave authors and don't mind reading new people. But I cringe to think how many are sitting unread on my kindle, mainly because I prefer print to e-book. Will have to get over that!

I only post once a week if I'm lucky and try to have guests so I don't have to bother when I'm too busy. I see some bloggers are only posting once a month now for IWSG. That's the day you'll get the comments without trying too hard, so good figuring! I never look at the sign-up list. I just use my blogroll and click of commenters of other blogs and try to hit a few new people. Spontaneous, aren't I?

Anyway, enjoy that travelling, eating and drinking, and your time with Michael.

Denise :-)

Tammy Theriault said...

I always read the book cover to cover. Even when it's super sucky. I always try to remember how much time they took to write it.

DEZMOND said...

there's nothing bad in sticking to what you like best :)

Romance Book Haven said...

I read books. And if its something not to my liking, I'm likely to put it down and start a new book. Then pick this one later. Depends on my mood.

Unknown said...

Nice post on digestion, digression, and reading habits! I have many books on my kindle from the first two years of using it that I still haven't read; but I have been reading my more recent purchases on my phone app. I have a tendency to have my phone with me in waiting places and I chew on a few paragraphs or a chapter at a time for some of my kindle books in those moments.

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