Everyone welcome my guest today, Carla Angela.
Mary: So if I say, Good Day Carla, is that lame? Yeah I thought so. Please tell us a bit about your background, where you group, etc.
Carla: Haha, saying G’day is perfectly fine! I’m more of a “hi/hello” kind of Aussie, but there are definitely those crocodile-wrangling types out in the Outback, who would use the Down Under greeting. Oh, and Russell Crowe lookalikes, I’m sure!
Beautiful garden, by the way! My mum’s a green thumb and she’d be very impressed.
My background’s in journalism, though since about the age of five I’ve had a not-so-secret yearning to pen novels (yep, I’m one of those pesky people whose dreamed about it since Day Dot and has bored my loved ones to tears about it!) I’m a member of various writers’ groups now… they help me feel a little less mad, and are more willing to listen ha.
Mary: Don't be too impressed with the garden, well that I had anything to do with it. My picture was taken at Red Butte Gardens in Salt Lake City, UT. Oh and I think Russell Crowe is HOT!
Do you celebrate the Christmas holidays in Australia? And if so, is it the same as in the US? Can you tell us your holiday traditions, if not Christmas whatever holiday you do celebrate?
Carla: Yes, Christmas is a big tradition Down Under, provided you are, of course, Christian. The Adelaide Christmas Pageant is like the starter pistol for the festive season here. It’s said to be the largest event of its kind in the world (reportedly inspired by the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade). Think floats, bands, clowns, dancing groups, and walking performers, all culminating in the arrival of the man himself: Father Christmas. When it kicks off in late November, it gives everyone the green light to suddenly adorn their houses with Christmas lights, put up their Christmas trees, and join the mad rush to buy festive gifts.
I imagine Christmas celebrations in Oz are fairly similar to the US – except for one biggie: it’s summer time here. So there’s less of the roasts and puddings on the menu and more of the salads, seafood and barbecued meat! Oh, and we might hit the beach afterwards to work off all our feasting, and not the ice rink.
Like many Aussies, I tend to spend my day going between the houses of my family and that of my hubby’s. And then wind up on the couch at night with a full belly, making a resolution to cut down on my calorie intake in the New Year (and failing by Jan 2)!
Mary: Do you have a favorite holiday—or non-holiday—recipe you can share with us?
Carla: Gosh, my hubby’s actually the chef in our household sorry haha! So instead, I thought I’d be cheeky and pass on a link from Taste.com.au for an Aussie Christmas banquet (think seafood platters and BBQ classics!) It’s here… http://www.taste.com.au/recipe+collection/articles/1309/aussie+christmas+lunch
I see some empty plates and glasses, let’s take a little break to refresh.
Mary: Everyone comfortable? Let’s continue then. Carla, when did you first know you wanted to write?
Carla: I thank my Mum for giving me a very healthy appetite for reading, which, in turn, inspired my writing. Visits to the library were frequent, and hence, even on family road trips, I’d always have my head buried in some book or magazine. From Enid Blyton to Sweet Valley High, Babysitters’ Club and Judy Blume, I could never devour enough reading material.
In my school holidays, as a teen, I used to hand-write 100-page, young adult-style novels. I’d have a rough idea of a plot in my head and somehow it would all just flow, because there was no pressure back then. I just did it all for my own enjoyment.
It’s taken me awhile to get back to that kind of carefree, creative head space after the hard slog of journalism.
Mary: Do you have a day job? If so, what?
Carla: I’m a freelance writer. I’ve gone from being a full-time print journalist to working from home. The idea was to give myself more time to concentrate on my true love: fiction writing! But somehow I still only manage to get time to work on the fiction side of things a few hours every other night. If I’m lucky. The dream is to do it full-time, combined with going for beach runs in the morning and window-shopping in the arvos. (Yeah, I’m a real dreamer!)
Mary: Hey, I'm right there with you, dreaming! Where can people find you? Website, blog, twitter, Facebook or any other places?
Carla: I have a blog! www.carlaangela.com But I’m an email addict as it is, so I’ve steered clear of Twitter et al thus far.
Mary: Carla, can you share with us a blurb for your latest book, and any buy links?
Carla: For sure! Here’s the blurb… When photographer Lake Silva helps her best friend trawl online dating sites in her search for love, she is appalled by some of the pictures men upload. Totally unflattering!
So Lake takes it upon herself to do something about it with a brainstorm for a new business venture—professional online dating photos. Slick, appealing, and sizzling hot...with Lake behind the camera lens! What she doesn’t count on is meeting one male client who stirs up more than just business sense in her.
Hunter Dex is not Lake’s usual customer. He lives in a palatial abode, and he has ocean-blue eyes and a tanned, muscular body.
Despite a photography exhibition of nudes also keeping Lake busy, she can’t help having dirty fantasies about Hunter. But such a gorgeous, rich playboy like him could never be seriously interested in a feisty tomboy like her...could he?
Oh, and for those who are mad keen to buy it hehe, here’s a link: http://www.bookstrand.com/full-exposure
Thank you, Carla for joining us today. I’ve had a blast.