Farewell to A Good Eater and Welcome to Notes from the Hinterland

The time has come to say farewell to A Good Eater. It makes me a little sad to do so as I have enjoyed writing for A Good Eater for 5 years. However, I am no longer doing what I set out to do when I began this blog—write about food in Maine from many different angles, from home cooking to eating in restaurants to visiting stores that feature local food to interviewing farmers. In other words, the Maine food scene.

Initially, I started out doing exactly what I had intended with A Good Eater. Clif and I traveled around the state, we ate, I cooked, I wrote. But then the Great Recession happened and with it came an increase in the cost of both food and fuel. Clif and I were affected in other ways, as many families were, and we had to adjust to living on a tighter budget. This meant staying closer to home—central Maine—and eating out only very occasionally. (I have watched with a kind of fascinated horror as the price of lunch has gone from, say, $6 to well over $10 and sometimes as much as $15. Dinner prices have become lunch prices.)

When it become clear that we could no longer travel around the state and sample food from various places—I must admit I loved doing this—I decided to focus on home cooking. After all, I cook supper nearly every single night. Supper at our house is not fancy, but it is tasty and nutritious, and it is almost always made from scratch. (Full disclosure: I do use Bertolli jarred sauce—tomato and basil.) In addition, I make bread, biscuits, muffins, and other baked goods.

For several years, I wrote about home cooking, coming up with new recipes at least once a week. However, I am more a generalist than a specialist, and as the years went by, I wanted to write about other things, too—community, people, living in place, social concerns, the environment. Slowly, almost stealthily, I began weaving these topics into A Good Eater, and I called them “digressions.”

Then one day not long ago I realized the digressions had pretty much taken over A Good Eater. Around the same time, I read a terrific book of nature essays—Field Notes from a Hidden City—by Esther Woolfson, who lives in Aberdeen, Scotland. Her clear, lovely prose and her keen observations about animals and plants made me realize how much I wanted to write nature essays, too. I have always been interested in the natural world, and for me a happy afternoon is sitting on the patio and observing all the fluttering and buzzing around me. I love watching the seasons change and with it the coming and going of leaves and flowers. Over and over it happens, but it never grows stale or old for me. When it comes to nature, I always have a “beginner’s mind.”

Clearly, it was time to go in a different direction with blog writing, and I knew exactly what I wanted for a new name. It would be Notes from the Hinterland, the title of a column I wrote for Wolf Moon Journal, the magazine Clif and I published for 7 years. Notes from the Hinterland is a broad enough title to allow me to write about whatever I please—nature, community, people, social concerns, and, yes, even food. There is no reason why I can’t still post recipes when inspiration strikes. After all, when you live in Maine, you live in the hinterlands, and anything that happens around you is fair game.

For long-time readers, nothing much will change except the title of this blog. Both http://www.agoodeater.com and http://www.notesfromthehinterland.com will take you to the same place: to Notes from the Hinterland (the blog formerly known as A Good Eater). I expect I will have to change things on Facebook, but I won’t be doing that for at least a week or two. Also, the blog itself might look a little different until everything is worked out.

So I bid a fond and sad farewell to A Good Eater. Not only has it been a good run, but I will always be a good eater. Now, onward to Notes from the Hinterland!



8 thoughts on “Farewell to A Good Eater and Welcome to Notes from the Hinterland”

  1. Goodbye A Good Eater! You had a great run!! And welcome Notes from the Hinterlands!! 🙂

  2. I think this is the right direction to go in. Looking forward to visiting the blog often.

  3. Dear Laurie,
    I am so disappointed that you will no longer be writing ‘A Good Eater’ blog! I’ve been an admirer of yours for years, and have so much appreciated your very personal style of recounting the days’ events from “the Little House in the Big Woods” through the unique lens of a foodie, Francophile, passionate environmentalist and Mainer (we share these attributes, which is another reason I have been drawn to your blog). I’ve grown to know you and Clif, Shannon & Mike, Farmer Kev, your circle of friends and all the interesting causes you’re involved with. I will miss going to the Railroad Cinema in Waterville, the Portland restaurants for birthday celebrations & taking walks with you & your dog along the Narrows Pond Road, and all your wonderful pics. You really have a wonderful life!
    There is something so very comforting about your writing style, it’s like sitting down with you along with a cup of tea and a plateful of Rochelle’s delicious gingersnaps (they’re my favorite Christmas cookie!) or the fabulous zucchini bread that you made for Shannon’s wedding shower (my colleagues in the office are begging me to make it again at the first signs of zucchini opulence in August) and chatting about everything that’s going on in Central Maine and beyond! I will sorely miss ‘A Good Eater’, though I intend to follow your foray into the Hinterlands to keep in touch, hoping for frequent ‘digressions’ to give us hard-core ‘AGE’ devotees some ‘Food for Thought’! 
    You’re a marvelous storyteller, thanks so much for sharing your heart & soul with your readers, and if ever you decide to resurrect ‘AGE’, you shall hear me singing avec joie all the way from NYC!!!!
    In the meantime, Godspeed and full steam ahead into the Hinterlands!!
    P.S. Could you retain archives of ‘AGE’ on your site for your avid fans to continue to access & enjoy just in case digressions are infrequent? Thanks! 🙂

    1. Elena, thanks so much for the kind words. And don’t despair! Mostly it’s just a name change to reflect the broader scope of the blog. I’ll still be writing about food and life at the “little House in the big woods.” Also, Railroad Square, friends, and celebratory trips to restaurants. There will still be plenty of pictures. I’ll just be sliding more nature essays into the blog. And, yes, the archives of AGE will remain on the blog. Again, many, many thanks for the kind words. What a great way to start the week.

  4. I live in Hallowell.
    I just picked up #8 of the Wolf Moon Press Journal, from 2004, out of a pile of giveaways at the Wiscasset Library.

    I printed 100 copies of my own little cookbook this last winter, and called it Cooking With Food. I love my little cookbook.
    I will be happy to follow you.
    Debbie Caldwell

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