Writing is like making cupcakes

Chocolate frosting being made in a mixing bowl
It tastes better than it looks!

Continuing our chocolate fixation this month… This is from way back in May 2020. Still applicable, though my cake baking skills have improved! Which maybe proves my point?

Here’s an allegory for writing. This morning, I wanted to bake something for my husband for his birthday. I’m not an experienced baker, by any means. Also, he’s vegan, so that means no eggs, no milk, no butter.

I started looking for recipes online. Breakfast stuff first: muffins, scones, etc. Do you know how to make a flax egg? Haha, me neither. Also we’re out of flax.

So I shifted to chocolate stuff. Brownies! Except I’ve made vegan brownies before. They didn’t go well. Basically, they were a bunch of loosely clumped crumbs that had to be eaten with a spoon. One brownie recipe advised you to stick the brownies in the fridge so they would firm up, and I know I’m being pissy, but that defeats the purpose of brownies for me. Also, I don’t have a square cake pan, which most of the recipes required. So I gave up on brownies.

By this point, the baby was wild and cranky, getting into fights with my son, who was complaining about wanting lunch. Already so late! I was sad, and tired. I’m not even a baker. Why was I wasting my time trying to do this? It would suck anyway. I should give up.

My mama didn’t raise quitters. I whined to friends and gave myself a few minutes to mope, then I kept looking for recipes. Okay, so I wouldn’t try to make a two-layer chocolate cake, but maybe cupcakes? And I finally found a recipe I had all the ingredients for.

I started making the cupcake recipe and realized, right after I mixed the wet ingredients, that I had already messed up. Put in WAY too much vinegar. That sure would have been something to taste test. I dumped it out and started over after another self-indulgent groanfest.

It finally came together. I put the cupcakes in the oven and got bold. Chocolate buttercream frosting. I’ve never made frosting in my life, but I was gonna do it. I used the wrong mixer attachment and then kept having to scrape the sides of the bowl but eventually… FROSTING.

And then, omg… CUPCAKES. They didn’t fall down in the middle! They didn’t explode over the edge! They were just cake in cups! Success was mine.

A dozen chocolate cupcakes still in the cupcake pan
Sweet, sweet victory!

So I went from giving up on ever baking anything because I suck and I can’t do it, to this. POOPCAKES! I think the frosting looks like little emoji poops. I have a simple mind.

Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting sprinkled with powdered sugar
Powdered sugar completes the rustic look

What does this have to do with writing? I mean, you probably connected those dots already, but… So many days, I feel like giving up. Like I can’t do it. Like writing is too hard and I’m a loser and how dare I even bother trying?

And then I do it anyway. Because yeah, maybe I’ll mess up. Maybe it’ll be the vegan brownie fiasco all over again. But. BUT. What if it isn’t?! What if it works this time? And you won’t know until you do it. And the more you do it, the better you get at it, even if it doesn’t feel that way.

Thanks for enjoying my poopcakes and my allegory. If you get discouraged, it’s okay and normal. You can take a break and feel your feels and then maybe, maybe, do the thing anyway?

The cupcakes were great by the way. And the frosting was effing sinful. FIN.

Cupcake recipe: https://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/vegan-chocolate-cupcakes-recipe/ Frosting recipe: https://lovingitvegan.com/vegan-chocolate-buttercream-frosting/

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