As I finally move towards a stable routine with my new job and this site, I’m considering making more of an effort to do freelance writing. Somewhere along the way, I think I gave up on the possibility of joining the ranks of seasoned freelance writers and stuck to a safety net of small, local magazines. There’s certainly nothing wrong with freelancing locally, but it has limited my writing to some extent.
I’m starting to miss my days at the university newspaper where I wrote about everything and anything. I miss the challenge that is exploring a new topic I know nothing about, while somehow writing with the authority of a professional. I also miss being paid to write. Who wouldn’t?
Income is definitely a factor here. For a while I wanted to throw all my time and energy into this site to make an income, but that path isn’t feasible at this point in my life. I’m past the “unemployed university graduate” stage, but have not quite reached the “comfortable working professional” stage. Feasibility aside, the type of writing that enriches me the most is not the type of writing that content pushing, fast-growing blogs tend to share.
So! This combination of posting once per week and allowing as many words as I wish to flow from my mind through the keys, has freed up my time a little (to this workaholic, that means I now have a weekend day off and don’t know what to do with myself).
I achieved a rare moment of stillness this afternoon that I haven’t felt in months. Laying in my nest with my laptop propped up on a pillow, I opened up a blank document and within half an hour’s time had written a personal essay of over 2,000 words. Shonda Rhimes calls this experience “the hum“, and it’s something I didn’t know I missed until I felt it again.
The hum occurs when you’re hard at work, completely absorbed, and a strong connection courses through you that resembles a drug-induced high. The hum comes from true joy and love in what you are experiencing in that very moment. I imagine the same brain centres are lit up when you’re experiencing the hum as the parts of your brain that are active when you are in love, and during cocaine use. The hum is a wonderful drug that gives you business power and allows you to push through hurdles and get things done.
I need the hum. I crave the hum. I’m so fortunate to have listened to Rhimes’ TED Talk last night because it brought some clarity to what I’ve been missing for a long time. I really, honestly, truly, need to write about more than food. It’s time I recognize that and make it a priority.
This simple recipe for chunky monkey chocolate bark is the kind of treat you can whip up in 15 minutes when your chocolate craving hits. For faster hardening, place the bark in the freezer directly after following steps 1-2. Crushed banana chips peanuts add a rich nutty taste to this bark for the enjoyment of kids and adults alike. If you prefer a softer bark, store it in the freezer. For a crunch-worthy bark, store in the fridge. Enjoy
Chunky Monkey Chocolate Bark
Author: Palette Dining
Prep time: 15 mins
Total time: 15 mins
Serves: one tray
- 2 cups (420 g/15 oz) semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 TB coconut oil
- 50 g (2 oz) banana chips, crushed coarsely
- 50 g (2 oz) roasted peanuts, crushed coarsely
- Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the chocolate chips with the coconut oil, stirring occasionally. Pour the melted chocolate over the parchment paper and sprinkle the banana chips and peanuts over the chocolate.
- Place the tray in the fridge to cool completely (at least 30 minutes), then break the bark into pieces and store in an airtight container.