Marzipan: A Confection is the title of my Master of Arts (Research) Thesis in Creative Writing, undertaken at the University of Melbourne between 2002 and 2004.
The Thesis, a 30,000 word novella, describes the invention of marzipan in a fictional German town during a famine in the 1400s.
The central narrative is preceded by a section entitled Method, which documents a history of Marzipan and my own creative involvement with this peculiar subject matter over the past 10 years.
The narrative itself is broken into four Parts, corresponding to three relatively undisputed ingredients of Marzipan (namely Eggs, Almonds and Sugar) and a Secret ingredient. Each Part is composed of one or more Chapters.
The narrative is followed by a short Notes section detailing the original models for each of the Characters and a list of Sources.
I began writing the story of Marzipan in the mid-1990s, the first results of which were published as ‘A Brief History of Marzipan’ in New England Review (University of New England, 1999).
A second piece, ‘The Invention of Marzipan’, a partly-confected essay, was published in Antithesis (University of Melbourne, 2004).