Fermentation

I’ve been a very sloppy blogger recently, and for that I sincerely apologize. I didn’t mean to fall into an every-other-week pattern, and I realize it’s Thursday today. I have a specific plan to improve (I’ve blocked out a blogging session each Monday evening) and I hope my weekly post will become a joyful habit, rather than something I cringe to realize that I’ve missed once again.

But I’m here now to talk to you about fermentation! The jars below contain tomato seeds from some of the varieties we grew this summer. This is the first year we’ve tried saving tomato seeds, but our friends Crista and Mike assure us that it’s straightforward. Basically, we choose the ripest, most beautiful specimen possible, scoop out the goo (technical term) and seeds, and put them in a jar. We top it up with a little water – about half as much water as there was goo, by volume – cover it and let it sit. When a thin layer of greyish-white mould grows on top of the water, we drain off the liquid and rinse, rinse, rinse. Then we dry the tomato seeds on a plate on that same sunny window-sill.

Looks like a mad science experiment, don’t you think?

But it’s not just tomato seeds we’ve been fermenting around here. Firstly, I’ve begun work on the New Book and it’s scaring the pants off me, in a good way. (No, I haven’t begun writing horror. I can’t even read horror. I tried reading Andrew Pyper’s The Killing Circle this summer and had to stop, I was so terrified. And then I had nightmares.) But the New Book is completely different from what I’ve written before: new setting, new time period, first-person instead of third-person, two narrators instead of one… I’m not sure I can do it, and it’s freaking me out, but I adore the challenge.

Another thing that’s fermenting is a visit to Calgary in November, about which I’m so excited. On November 28th, I’ll be reading at two branches of the Calgary Public Library! I’ll post times and locations as soon as I know the details.

And finally, my lovely UK editor just sent me a draft cover for Walker Books’ edition of Rivals in the City. I’m not allowed to share it yet, because it’s still being discussed and refined. But I can tell you that it’s gorgeous…

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8 Responses to “Fermentation”

  1. Valentina says:

    I hope a visit to Toronto is also fermenting :)

  2. Kari says:

    Yay! I get all kinds of excited about covers XD

  3. Ying says:

    Hopefully in the spring, Valentina! And thanks, Kari! I’m in the stare-at-it-for-ages stage.

  4. Rade says:

    I am almost trembling with anticipation! Can`t wait to get my hands on “Rivals in the city”! :-)

  5. HJ says:

    I’d like to know – why are you fermenting tomato seeds?

  6. Ying says:

    Thank you, Rade! I hope you find it worth the wait. HJ, it’s a little experiment in seed-saving. Apparently, if you ferment the seeds, they germinate faster the following year and the fermentation kills a lot of disease-carrying bacteria that might otherwise lie dormant and attack the new plants. I can’t vouch for the process but I have friends who do, so I’m giving it a shot.

  7. I absolutely loved the first book in your “The Agency” series. I just finished it minutes ago. I actually could not stop reading it and even put aside Candy Crush which held no interest to me once I started reading. Loved the writing style, the mystery and twists, and the light romance. Can’t wait to start the next book tonight!

  8. Ying says:

    Thank you for stopping by, Caren with a C, and for your very kind words! I’m thrilled to know you enjoyed Spy. I just had a peek at your blog and it looks like we have a lot of common interests: books, homemade food, and crafting. I look forward to checking it out further.

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