What inspired you to write your book?
Dick’s Incredible Nuts-What a Handful is the result of my long-time interest in cooking and food, especially nuts. The cookbook was born from my experiments with almonds— inspired by roasted almonds I tried at a sporting event in 1998. “You know the ones…you can smell them half a mile away!”. After experimenting for years with different types of nuts and various spice combinations, I included the best recipes in a cookbook for readers to enjoy and make their own.
Once I began to give my delicious homemade nuts as holiday gifts, I received rave reviews. Soon, people began to ask for my recipes, which gave me the idea to record them in a book. I encourage readers to modify the recipes to fit their taste, advising them, “Experiment and have fun with them…go nuts and enjoy!”
About your Book:
Richard Schlatter’s cookbook, Dick’s Incredible Nuts-What a Handful, marries his love of food, cooking, design, and photography in a whimsical style that should appeal to foodies, home cooks, and those who love to entertain with homemade food gifts. The recipes are based on Schlatter’s own experiments with nuts of all types, which began in 1998. Each year since, he’s developed a new recipe with different spices, flavorings, and nuts. He began giving the nuts as gifts, and soon people were raving about the delicious treats and asking for his recipes. These recipes are compiled in this beautiful cookbook.
Cuisine Style or Food Genre
Food Gift Ideas, Nuts, Snacks
Sample Recipe or Food Advice
“Test” your recipes. I spent over 12 years “testing” my nut recipes with clients, neighbors, family, and friends….probably several hundred people. When I got to the point that I was printing hundreds of copies of the recipes on my copy machine, because everyone wanted the recipes, I decided to take it to the next level and do a book. I had a pretty good idea that, if I put it out there, people would buy it.
What formats are your books in
How do you see writing a food/cookbook as different from writing other genres of books?
There are already a zillion cookbooks on the market, so unless your name is Paula Dean or Bobby Flay, you need to have something that is unique. By “theme” I don’t necessarily mean “Asian cooking”, or “Southwestern cooking”….but something that will appeal to a certain demographic. In other words, target your market. “Dick’s Incredible Nuts” targets those people who like to entertain…people who like to make food items for gift giving… and people who simply like nuts for snacking. Other ideas might be a cookbook targeted at people who like to go camping…a huge market segment….such as “Quick and easy campfire meals”. This type of cookbook could be easily sold in sporting goods stores and even RV dealerships…places where ordinary traditional cookbooks would probably not be sold. In other words, create your own niche market.
What advice would you give to someone that is thinking about or currently working on a food book or cookbook
Surround yourself with a team of professionals. It just happens that I am a graphic designer and am also experienced in art directing food photography and food styling. I have worked with clients such as Kellogg’s, designing and art directing recipe books. So, even though you might be a great cook/chef and have some fantastic recipes, that is not enough. Photographing food is an art, plain and simple. I don’t care who you are and how many great recipes you have, if you aren’t willing to commit to hiring the talent to create a visually appealing book, then don’t waste your time and money.
How did you decide how to publish your book and where is it published through:
My book is being self-published through a consultant and Lightning Source. I hired a book publishing consultant to help me navigate through all of the things like copyrights, ISBN numbers, Library of Congress number, and distribution through channels like Amazon and Barnes and Noble.
And finally, you need to have someone on your team who can assist in marketing your book. It is all about building a team. It starts with the recipes…then you have to bring it to life…then you have to bring it to the marketplace.
From a young age, Richard Schlatter wanted to be an architect. After attending the University of Cincinnati, he went to Chicago and studied graphic design under Wade Ray at the Ray Vogue Schools.
After working in a Chicago studio for several years, he moved to Michigan to become the Creative Director at an Advertising Agency in Battle Creek, Michigan. In the mid 70’s, he formed his own design firm and worked with such notable accounts as The Kellogg Company, The W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Oldsmobile, The University of Michigan Hospital, Berne’a Foods, as well as many other local and regional accounts.
Over the course of his career, Schlatter has won more than 75 awards for creativity and excellence in design from many different trade organizations and publications, including the prestigious Silver Medal from the American Advertising Federation.
His first foray into cookbook publishing, Dick’s Incredible Nuts-What a Handful, brings together his passion for food (especially nuts), cooking, design, and photography.