A New Chapter for Sixburnersue

DSC_0071Dear Sixburnersue Readers,

This is a long overdue thank you note, of sorts. A thank you for being patient while I let blog posts go (mostly) by the way side over the last six months.

I have turned my book manuscript in, we have finished shooting all the photos, and now the book is in the hands of the talented editors and designers at Roost. I think it is going to be my best book yet! Still, we will have to wait a whole year before it is designed, printed, and published next spring.

It means though, that I can no longer use the book work as an excuse for not blogging. It means I have to be honest with you and tell you that there was, in fact, another reason for the temporary suspension of sixburnersue. Last fall, my partner Roy and I ended both our personal and business relationship. We retired the “Green Island Farm” name, and after debating who would stay on the farm property, I made a decision to move in December. (Though I am fortunately still in West Tisbury, and of course still on Martha’s Vineyard—no way I’m leaving this island!) Roy and the chickens are still at the old place.

Having written so much about our life on the farm, I felt I owed it to you to tell you this news, but it wasn’t (isn’t) something that I honestly want to dwell on in a blog that began—and hopefully will continue—as an expression of my joy in cooking and growing vegetables. Someday I will settle back into one of the many approaches I’ve taken to writing a memoir, and I will have yet another lens to look through! Life continues to surprise and challenge me, and some days (you all know this feeling), it seems to be nothing short of a Herculean effort to make it all work. But somehow, regardless of whether I fail or succeed, I’m always compelled to move forward, to keep trying, and especially, to keep doing what I love. Here’s the geeky truth: My high school motto plays an endless loop in my head. The Latin is “Inveniam viam aut faciam.” The English translation is “I shall find a way or make one.”

In that spirit, I have set to work finding a new piece of land on which to grow vegetables and flowers (and restart a small market business), and I hope to have good news to report on that very soon. In December, I also began working part-time at Bunch of Grapes bookstore in Vineyard Haven, so I get to spend part of my days in the company of books and book lovers. I’m continuing to write a regular food column for Martha’s Vineyard Magazine, and working on new features for Vegetarian Times. Patching together a living is a time-honored tradition here on Martha’s Vineyard, where more traditional jobs are scarce, so I am not alone in this endeavor. It might be less scary and more lucrative (well, definitely more lucrative!) if I chose another route, but it wouldn’t be as challenging or creative or ultimately as satisfying.

So I thank you again for hanging in there, and now we will get back to our regular programming!




31 thoughts on “A New Chapter for Sixburnersue”

  1. Hang in there, Suzie.

    This has been a challenging time for so many people I know, including myself. The most important thing is to get up each day and move forward.

    I don’t cook much anymore; however, I love reading about it. When you describe your days with the many tasks involved, I experience it through you. I love your energy.

    Keep it coming! Good luck finding a new property.


    Diane Sappenfield, McLean, VA

  2. Your talent, bravery and courage have always been an inspiration to me, and now more than ever. Cheers and best wishes to you, Susie I cannot wait until next spring for the new book!. Here’s to finding that patch of land soon. The land needs you. We all do. XOXO!

  3. You’re still the strong determined woman I met 10+ years ago.
    So happy you’re still writing…you’re an inspiration to us all.

    Wishing you all the very best that life has to offer!


  4. You are very brave for being so open. I admired you for your decision to start the farm and I know you will continue to make your way through life creating success and memories along the way. I enjoy using your books. They are beautiful in every way. You are such an inspiration.


    Isabel McKinlay ON, Canada

  5. Dear Susie,
    In reading your post, the school motto also popped in my head, and I was thinking, “She will find a way or make one through this.” And then you mentioned it. It really is true. I’m sorry for what must have been a crazy time of needing to be productive in the midst of tremendous upheaval. Thinking of you. Resilience. Wish I could visit! One day….

  6. Susan, thank you so much! I know, who knew that motto would get us through so much!! Yes, having to focus on the book through this was interesting, to say the least!. I will really hope we will get to visit some time. I do want to get back to England. But I am glad we have Facebook to reconnect! Susie

  7. Tracey, you and Carole are the best inspiration I know. Hugs to you both and thank you so much for everything over the years! Susie

  8. Hi Susie – Life changes are daunting and devastating but open up some new avenues every time. I know you will find your land soon. I’ll be on the island in a couple of weeks to help my friend empty her house. I’ll get in touch. xoCathy

  9. Sounds Luke you’re facing this next phase of your life with sanity and good cheer. Good for you!

  10. Hi Susie. I have admired your spirit & resilience since Fine Cooking days and I know good things will be coming your way. I just spoke about you in a conversation about future possibilities. I hope to talk with you soon.

    All my best to you

    Kelly Gearity

  11. Good luck on all of your new adventures. You have helped me through dreary Iowa winters and inspired me to try new veggies like Fairy Tale eggplant! Keep your lovely photos and food coming. I am looking forward to the new book!

  12. Susie, you rock. You are brave, and creative, and you’re going to be just fine. Come see us on Cottage Street this summer! I’m excited we’ll be neighbors.

  13. Great to see you blogging again Susie! I’m happy to hear the book is on its way… and am looking forward to next spring when it arrives. I wish you the best in your new endeavors and I’m looking forward to seeing you soon at your new market!

  14. Susie, your words and photographs have always brought joy to those who read your blogs.We always looked forward to the next “edition” We never wanted the blog to end,it was so great.Now we wish you well on your next chapter and are sure it will continue to bring joy and happiness to many.

  15. Sorry, Susie.
    I have a friend named Suzie and my fingers took over….
    You bring us much joy with your recipes, your blog, your photos.
    Carry on.

  16. No worries on the spelling and thank you so much for being in touch! Hopefully I’ll be back on a regular blogging schedule now!

  17. THank you Liz and Bill. I’m looking forward to getting back to regular blogging and thanks for staying with me!

  18. Hi Marie! Thanks for all of your support (as always!) And I will keep you posted on the new vegetable growing endeavor! And see you soon, I hope!Susie

  19. Hi Tot!

    Thank you for writing and looking forward to seeing you this summer (I don’t think I’m heading into your neighborhood but maybe the rumor mill is ahead of me?!!)

    Take care, Susie

  20. Thanks Helen, and I appreciate all of the comments you leave and will try to keep the good stuff coming!!

  21. Hi Kelly, Thanks for being in touch and I hope you are doing well, too. Resilience, yes!!!

  22. Hi Cathy,

    Yes, learning to stare fear down is, I’m finding, a lot of what it is all about. I’m excited you’ll be up here and this time I would love to get that cup of coffee if possible!! thanks for being in touch, susie

  23. A heartbreaking time for you, I’m sure. But, you are a very centered person, have a wonderful family, have lots of projects going on. So, you will come back from all this. It will take some time. But I think that your connection with the earth and gardening and writing will be rehabilitative (is that a word??) to mind and body. I hope to see you in the Boston area when you start your book tour.

  24. Hi Kathy

    Thanks for your kind words. Hope you are doing well and I will keep you posted when the book is nearing publication! All best, susie

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