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What’s On Your Food Writing Menu: Bird, Beast, or Fish?

As food writers we’re always looking for ways to expand our market coverage. We may do restaurant reviews, write a food-related column or contribute to one, maybe we’re compiling a focused, specialized cookbook or submitting food-related stories and recipes. One technique which has worked well for me is writing interesting anecdotes or short clips to set the scene and then providing a couple or so recipes to finish off the reader’s “experience”. This is especially productive if the article slant is highly unique or very different in some way. This kind of “How-to-catch-it” followed by a “How-to-cook-it” or recipe selection provides more than just the typical run-of-the-mill, Grandma’s hand-me-down recipe story.

Here’s an example of mine excerpted from “Piranha: Deadly and Delicious” published in BRAZIL magazine:

“The Amazon is filled with danger. Soldier ants march by the millions devouring all life in their path. Submerged up to the eyes, Crocodiles lie in wait for the unwary – whatever or whoever that may be. Undulating its 20-foot length beneath the surface, the Anaconda, one of the world’s largest snakes, uses heat-seeking guidance to find its next meal. The barbed stinger in the tail of platter-sized stingrays can inflict a wound that takes months to heal. But none of these carry the fearsome mystique of the voracious Piranha, the perfect killing machine.

They had it even before we knew what was happening. My rod bowed in prayer to something below the tea-colored water’s surface. The six-pound test line danced like a cat on a hot pavement. All hell had broken loose. Beads of sweat rolled down Doris’ back. Her clothes were now a second skin, clinging to her every move. We panted for breath. We had fish on. The silvery oval-shaped body and red belly of a Piranha broke the surface. I reached for it. “Don’t let a finger get near their mouths or you’ll lose it”, our native guide barked.”

The second half of this piece contains four different recipes for preparing the fish, noting what substitutes can be used if they’re not available where you live. The piece sold within 24 hours of querying.

Is there a hunting or fishing specialty in your area? Hunting and Fishing Clubs are great sources for outdoors interviews เกมยิงปลาออนไลน์ as hunters and fishermen seem never to tire of telling the story of how they bagged that “big one”. The tightened up, condensed narrative makes an excellent prelude to three or four different recipes for preparing the catch of the day.

Some fish, fowl and game species that are frequently sought after fishing-based pieces include:

o Trout

o Salmon

o Catfish

o Eel (Yes, these are often eaten, and they’re delicious too – even considered a delicacy in Europe and Asia)

But for a change, try something a little less common that may well pique an outdoor editor’s interest like:

o Pike, pickerel

o Shark

o Tuna

o Turtle (where species taking is not illegal or endangered)

For fowl-based writing try pieces and recipes for the likes of:

o Squab (dove or pigeon)

o Quail (also pheasant and Grouse)

o Duck

o Wild turkey

You can also hit the food-writing jackpot more easily with other game-based writing on hunted species including:

o Bear (where species taking is not illegal or endangered)

o Wild boar

o Deer (venison)

o Snake (quite common in some areas)

Don’t forget small game possibilities either. They are not only plentiful, but will often be scooped up if local area sportsmen are featured. Good bets are:

o Squirrel

o Possum (also called Opossum)

o Groundhog

o Muskrat (also called “Marsh Rabbit”)

You can glean a wealth of preparation methods as well from the hunting, fishing and outdoors club and group members you interview. It’s not only different, but fun. Both hunting and fishing are seasonal in nature so you’ll be able to do a number of pieces every year, all year long as the seasons change.

A variety of available markets exist. The clubs themselves may have a members’ publication you can pitch. Restaurants that feature game cooking, outdoors magazines, Men’s magazines are good bets too. Pitch to seasonal issues of food magazines. Don’t forget teen, children’s, and travel magazines all take unique food-related articles slanted to their readerships. Town and Country, Hunting, Fishing and Adventure magazines will help round out your submissions list.

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