Friday, May 21, 2010

Julie and Julia and Life as a Blogger

A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to watch "Julie and Julia." The premise of the movie is that a young woman named Julie decides to spend a year making all of the recipes in Julia Child's book Mastering the Art of French Cooking and blogging about the experience. Julie is a frustrated writer working a government job she hates while all her college mates have gone on to successful careers. This is her chance to exercise her writing muscles, and the blog eventually gains her fame, a book deal, and (ultimately!) this movie about her story.

Now, the best thing I can say about my cooking is that I haven't killed anyone. I'm not a foodie, and chances are I will go through my whole life without ever cooking anything out of a Julia Child cookbook, yet I enjoyed watching Julia find her niche. She went to cooking school in Paris to find something to do and it turned into her life's work. I appreciated her determination as she worked 8 years on her cookbook. Meryl Streep did a great job playing her!

What I was most interested in, however, was Julie's life as a blogger, one of us intrepid people who share our lives and thoughts with the world via this modern tool. She was doing this project in 2002 when blogging wasn't anywhere near as ubiquitous as it is now. I loved her idea of a one-year blogging project. I had done that myself in 2008 with my Moment of Beauty project. There is something about making a commitment to do something every day for a year and following through on it. The scene in the movie that most resonated with me was when she felt like no one was reading. It can be hard to be a blogger, to wonder if anyone reads what is put out there. Then slowly she began to get more and more comments until she had a whole wide community following her and got the attention of the New York Times. (Yes, by that point, I was jealous!). Yet all is not roses. Her obsession with her project does cause some issues in her personal life.

In any event, "Julie and Julia" is a great movie for anyone who loved Julia Child, loves cooking, or loves blogging.

3 comments:

Mary B said...

What really struck me as honest are those times you write a whole post only to delete it because you don't have permission to share it. That's why I blog so much less now. Everything that's important to me is something too private. Wish I had picked a timeline!

Heidi Hess Saxton said...

I was watching J&J just as I stumbled on your post! The scene with the lobsters really made me laugh ... I act like that whenever I open the "mouse drawer" in our kitchen. (We have two mouse traps in the drawer next to the stove, where they like to hide.)

I also loved to watch Julia and her husband intract. They looked like such an unlikely couple ... yet cleary they loved each other with tremendous passion.

Patrice Fagnant-MacArthur said...

@Mary, yes, it is certainly true, we need to self-censor (which isn't always easy!). @Heidi, yes, I could relate to the lobster scene as well - no way am I killing any crustations! And yes, Julia and Paul were sweet. Thanks for commenting!