Friday, May 30, 2014

Can The 'Ah Ha' Moment Come Too Late?

Or...Why I like digital publishing.

What happened to the month of May? With Mother’s Day, birthdays and a family reunion, I seemed to spend the month cooking. As I considered what to make for the reunion, I decided to use the checkerboard cake pan I hadn’t used in years.

I decided on chocolate and strawberry flavors, but after mixing the cake, I discovered I only had one insert for the pans. I diligently greased and floured the insert and pan and poured the first of three layers.

When the layer came out of the oven I could see I over filled the three sections, but I carefully sliced the extra even with the top of the pan. Then discovered the insert would not come out of the pan without running a knife around all three circles.

As I washed, dried, greased and floured the blinkedy blink insert, I admired the trimmed off section and how smooth the two colors blended above the insert. Still no ‘ah ha’ moment and I went through this three times. The amazing thing was the fact that all three layers came out and stacked nicely on the previous layers. Even the gap between the circles that widened when I put on the fudge icing did not ruin the sides of the cake.

Still no ‘ah ha’ moment…

At the reunion, we were sitting with the nephew and his wife when people started going for dessert. I said I hope my cake doesn’t fall apart if anyone tried a slice. I told nephew’s wife I’d made a checkerboard cake. She replied she had made one and boasted of her feat to her grandmother. But granny said, “Oh, I made those cakes years ago, before they made special pans.”

Still, nothing clicked as I asked how her granny accomplished that when the two colors had to be separated for the cake to form the checked pattern. Even as we spoke, images of the trimmed off cake flashed through my head, but that’s all. Just a quick flash, and then it happened. Like a sharp pain to the head, I realized why there was only separator for a three layer cake.

Are you ROFL yet? In my defense, new versions of this pan come with a plastic insert clearly stating remove before baking. My insert is metal. Too bad I didn’t go shopping on line for the pan before I started baking.

So, it’s never too late. Baking three layers…one at a time…is similar to doing revisions and edits. Producing the tall, fudge cake, with stack toy looking rings, is the same a publishing your story. In previous times, if you found mistakes after your book was published, too bad. Today, you can polish and update to your heart’s content.

It’s never too late. So how many times have you wished you could go back and correct a mistake?    
PS…yes, I laughed. What else could I do, my cake was ‘traditionally’ baked.


  1. This brought back memories. My mother used to bake a checkerboard cake. She just carefully poured circles of chocolate and yellow dough into the pans. Sometimes the checks were a little off, but the cake was always delicious.

    You're right. It is nice to be able to go back and correct mistakes.

  2. Now that takes skill, Sandy! I had trouble with a special pan. Thanks for taking time to comment.

  3. This is why I don't bake - too stressful. Lol
    I have found editing errors in all my books. Got slammed on a few also. I never checked my Avalin books but some of them are the worst.

    Thanks for letting me know I am not alone in this

  4. My DH reads tomes on history and finds mistakes all the time.

  5. Is that the same as a marble cake? I don't know the cake pan you're talking about. A marble cake is free form swirls of usually three different flavours of mixture. Nice and easy!

  6. Is that the same as a marble cake? I don't know the cake pan you're talking about. A marble cake is free form swirls of usually three different flavours of mixture. Nice and easy!

  7. Marble cake, I can do that... My mother-in-law was a whizz at checkerboard cakes but I'm a double chocolate fudge devil's food with fudge frosting from a box kind of girl. That's not my work ethic with regard to writing/editing though.

  8. Marble cake is delicious, Elisabeth. Checkerboard cake is three layers, with two alternating flavors poured in the pans to form circles, or use the special pan. The bottom and top layer are the same, but the middle layer is opposite so when the cake is cut...each slice is checked! Thanks for posting.

  9. I like the boxed mix as well, Leigh...why reinvent the wheel? Except...for special occasions. I left out the part about learning from mistakes and trying again. I intend to perfect the use of the cake pan. And if one book doesn't work, then keep trying when writing the next one.
    As our own Sierra Donnovan is fond of saying..."Never Give Up!"
    Thanks so much for posting.