…and it’s writing.

A tipsy discussion of writing craft. Writers D.C. McNaughton and Avery Ames imbibe a few drinks while they review and revise their old (and often cringey) writing. Each episode focuses on a particular aspect of craft and features a themed cocktail pairing.

Ep 003: Setting a Scene

June 26th, 2021

D.C. and Avery discuss the techniques we use to set a scene, including D.C.'s "lizard in a box" theory on character and setting.

Books mentioned in this episode:

The Goldfinch, by Donna Tartt
A Fatal Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum: Murder in Ancient Rome, by Emma Southon
The Hunchback of Notre Dame, by Victor Hugo
Kushiel's Dart, by Jacqueline Carey



Drink Recipe 1:

Smoked Salted Caramel Martini:

Salt foam (optional):

  • 5 oz water
  • 1.5 tsp smoked sea salt
  • 3 tsp Foam Magic

Stir salt into water first to dissolve, then blend salt water and Foam Magic until it forms a foam. I used a small smoothie blender for this.

For Drink: 

  • 1 oz vodka
  • 2 oz creme de cacao
  • 1.5 oz Hershey's caramel syrup
  • 1.5 oz milk or preferred milk substitute
  • Hershey’s chocolate syrup (optional for garnish)
  • If not making salt foam, you'll need a table salt/smoked salt mix for rim
    (depending on how strong your smoked salt is, just cut it with table salt until it tastes good to your palate)
  1. Mix vodka, creme de cacao, caramel syrup, and milk in a mixing glass and stir well. All ingredients should be chilled - if not, stir with ice to chill and then strain out the ice.
  2. If you're not using the salt foam, rim a martini or coupe glass with the smoked salt/table salt mix instead at this stage.
  3. Pour the mixing glass into the prepared glass.
  4. If using foam, pour it gently on top.
  5. Drizzle lightly with chocolate syrup if desired.



Drink Recipe 2:

Ice and Vines:

  • 2 oz blue raspberry vodka
  • 1.5 oz simple syrup
  • 1 oz lime juice
  • 6-8 mint leaves
  • 1-1.5 cup of ice (depending on desired consistency)
  • Granulated sugar (for rim)
  • Mint sprig (optional for garnish)
  1. Muddle mint and simple syrup together, then strain through a fine strainer to remove leaves.
  2. Add the strained syrup, vodka, lime, and ice to blender, blend well.
  3. Rim a glass with granulated sugar and pour into the glass. Garnish with a mint sprig.
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