I’ve added a couple of features to the blog — if you look to the left you’ll see a link to Interviews and Profiles, and Place Last Seen. One of the things I’m liking about WordPress is having the flexibility to post some longer pieces. In the Interviews and Profiles section I’ve posted an profile I wrote for the Corporation for the Northern Rockies of Rick Bayless. I spoke with Bayless shortly after returning to Montana after a visit to Chicago where I was astounded by the vibrant Farmer’s Market culture that has grown up in the 20 years since I left. Bayless has been instrumental in nurturing local organic farming and in helping both farmers and restauranteurs learn how source their restaurants year ’round using as much local produce and meat as possible. Although winters can be long in northern Illinois, it’s enormously productive farmland — the land is covered in a thick, lush, productive layer of black dirt left by the last glaciation — land that’s rapidly being covered with houses, so it’s good to see someone like Bayless working to help farmers keep farming. (For more on the trials of small farmers in the area, see the terrific documentary: The Real Dirt on Farmer John.)
I’ve also put up the first chapter of my novel, Place Last Seen. It’s been a while since the book came out — it was published in 2000 — but between real life and the Corporate Job, it’s taking a while to get the next one finished. If you want to see reviews, they’re posted here.
The other innovation here at the new LivingSmall is the link to the right to my Amazon Store (see this post for my original thinking on linking to Amazon). Over at TypePad I always had a list of books and music I’d been enjoying to the left of the text pane, so consider this analagous. It’s a spot over at Amazon where I’ve gathered links to books and movies I think you might be interested in, as well as those kitchen items that fit the LivingSmall concept — things that might not be the cheapest, but that will last a long time, don’t add to the appliance clutter in most kitchens, and that make it easier to cook for oneself and one’s family. So, if you’re liking the new LivingSmall, buying an item off my store will help me pay my ISP fees.
Stay tuned for more innovation here at LivingSmall. I’m looking forward not only to continued posting, but to doing some longer interviews and profiles, and perhaps even posting a few of the essays I’ve been working on these past few months.