I am so pleased to be on your delightful blog today to talk about a Christmas memory of mine – a memory that's all about those wonderful things that can happen during that special time of year and … Christmas cookies!
In my house, making kolucis was an EVENT.
They were the favorite Christmas cookie recipe of my Gram Mogilewsky and my mom. You pronounce the Polish (maybe Lithuanian?) cookies as “kuh LOTCH eez.” The cookies are like tiny nut rolls, only sweeter, crispier, and flakier. And don't worry, you do not have to decipher my Mom's writing underneath years of baking stains - the full recipe is written out at the end of this post.
When I was growing up, making the kolucis was a BIG DEAL. After all, it took two days. Two days! And it meant that-gulp-Christmas was officially comin...
In celebration of the release of ‘It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Chick Lit’a fabulous collection of 11 stories by a range of Chick Lit authors (released on November 4th), I'm running a series of blog posts on some of the authors (including their favourite Christmas recipe and the story behind it). This post is talking with the wonderful Vivan Brooks.
1: Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you write.
My name is Nikki LeClair, and Vivian Brooks is my pen name. I live in Canada, and have a slight obsession with tea, and notebooks at the moment. I started writing when I was in high school. An English teacher recommended it because she said I had an over-active imagination and it was what got me in trouble.
If you follow my Facebook page you’ll definitely know that a fantastic Christmas anthology written by a collective of 9 Chick Lit authors (including myself, no bias of course) is set for launch in 2 days on November 4th. The Anthology, ‘It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Chick Lit’is a collection of funny and sometimes romantic (or tragic) Christmas stories, each with an individual voice and flavour, but all based around the holiday theme.
In celebration of this release I’ll be running a series of blog posts on some of the authors (including their favourite Christmas recipe and the story behind it), beginning with the fabulous Amy Gettinger.
1: Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you write.
I am a mother of two employed (!!) UC grads in engineering, one of whom is marrie...
Creating authentic and believable characters can sometimes be a challenge when writing and for that reason many authors often use elements of themselves and their own personalities, or of people they know and love.
Sometimes you get a great idea and launch into structuring the bones of this amazing new story, but creating characters who will ultimately do all of the talking and really bring it to life can take much more time and work. How they walk, talk and act, or how they dress and what they like and don't like all become vital in making them feel real and like someone the reader can identify with or recognise.
As a first time author, one of the biggest things I struggled with was facing the fact that readers, family and friends might be thinking that the main character was ba...
In the last few years I’ve had the opportunity to not only write 4 books, but have also been lucky enough to bring 2 of them (so far) to publication. In that time I have also read. A lot. Not just for fun, although that is the best kind of reading, but also many text books as part of the Bachelor of Writing I have been studying forever! (That’s a slight exaggeration, but it feels like forever!)
From women’s fiction, chicklit, and historical romance, to instructional guides, text books about editing and how-to’s, there have been only 2 books that have had a real impact on me and now have pride of place on my desk, within arms reach so that they can devoured again and again.
My writing career began at the April 2014 Fiona McIntosh Masterclass in Adelaide. I’ve mentioned this in cou...
As an author, one of the hardest things (after actually writing a book) is marketing it. I shudder even uttering the word because as any new author would know, it is a hard slog and at times, it can feel like a ball and chain around your ankle that you just can’t ignore.
We’re authors, what on earth do we know about marketing? Yet, we are expected – whether we are traditionally or self-published, to get right on that hamster wheel and get our work out there. I was published by one of the big guys, Harper Collins Australia, but that certainly didn’t mean that I could sit back and wait for the dollars to roll in. (Trust me, I’m still waiting!) I had to do the work, and it was much more than I ever imagined.
I've been very lucky, in that I have worked in this area for a long time,...
Having recently made the jump from ChickLit to Historical Fiction, I’m quickly learning just how hard it is to write authentically about a time in which I didn’t live or have the opportunity to experience for myself. Did I mention that living in Australia while the book is set in England and Scotland is also proving quite the challenge?
I’ll tell you a little bit about the project before I explain:
My grandfather lived a long life. He was 97 when he passed away last year and in spite of his dementia, he was still sprightly and outgoing. He loved to talk about all the things he had done and the places he had been, but I struggled to imagine just how much he had seen or how far his feet had carried him in all those years, and that had alwa...
Chick Lit is full of them, right? Those guys we love to hate. The type who start out driving us nuts with their self-absorbed attitudes, love of sport and women, and who give little or nothing to the females they 'conquer', other than a bit of shenanigan’s when the mood takes them.
But why do we love to hate them so much? And more importantly why do we love to see them evolve and change into the kind of men that we love to love?
In Bridget Jones’s Diary, it is of course, Hugh Grant (AKA Daniel Cleaver) who drives us crazy, but steals a little piece of our heart - and Bridget's. Daniel is the handsome playboy type who likes to have a bit of fun and is up for anything.
He wants to be better, and we see that potential in him, but somehow he always just falls back to...
I was recently asked by my high school to speak at an assembly in honour of their highest achieving students for 2015. I felt so privileged to be asked, although I wasn't at all a model student back in the 90s, nor was I the kind of student who was at the top of my class.
When I asked what they would like me to talk about at the assembly, I was told to talk about my time at the school, my life since leaving more than 20 years ago and some of the things I'd learnt along the way.
The school was aware that I was a marriage celebrant and justice of the peace and that I had written a couple of books, but I decided that I had much more than that to say about life and to tell an auditorium full of hopeful kids about what lessons life had taught me.