Originally Posted by ChefJune
Many culinary schools will not accept an applicant who has not spent at least 6 months in the back of the house. It's a good policy, because school alone will not give you the tru picture of life in the kitchen.
I would recommend two books: "Becoming a Chef" by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page, and "The Making of a Chef" by Michael Ruhlmann.
"Soul of a Chef" by Ruhlman is also good, although "Making of" is indeed a little more applicable.
Anyway, yeah, get 6-12 months kitchen experience somewhere and then take yourself to school.