I’m excited and honoured that the very talented (and exceptionally cool) Jill Edmondson has given me this wonderful Liebster Blog Award. It means a lot to me coming from an author whose work and blog I respect the way I do Jill’s.
This award asks me to share 11 random things about myself and then answer 11 questions. So… here goes:
Eleven Random Facts About Me
Teal is my favourite colour. Seriously, I am obsessed.
You’ve probably guessed this from the titles I use for my blog post, but I almost always have songs running through my brain. Yes, a mental soundtrack.
I once went on a ‘camera safari’ in South Africa. Actually I went on two. There is nothing adequate to describe the South African bush at night.
I had the role of Pippi Longstocking (Astrid Lindgren’s fictional character) in our Grade Three play.
Gardening is not my forte. I’ve tried – really. But to no avail. I admire beautiful gardens though.
Once, while I was teenager, I was swimming in the ocean and got hit on the head (accidentally) with a surfboard. That explains so much…
At university, I studied Spanish and economics.
You know those temperament tests they give in secondary school to help students decide on a career path? One of my suggested careers was FBI special agent. I never followed up on that possibility…
My handwriting is so illegible that I even word-process grocery lists. Not joking.
For me, the best places to eat and drink when I travel are where the local people go, not the ‘tourist places.’
I’m not normally afraid of critters, but it was not fun finding a black widow spider in my shower. Yes, that happened. The spider soon discovered the business end of one of my shoes.
Jill has also included eleven questions she’s asked me to answer. So here we go with them:
1. Think of any book you’ve read recently. If that book (please tell us the title) were a meal, what would the meal be?
One book that comes to my mind is Edward Rutherfurd’s New York (I like historical novels and I’m a Rutherfurd fan). The meal? New York deli. The best deli places are a composite of the city, just as the novel is.
2. What fictional character would you like to bring to life for just one day, and why?
This is actually the hardest of these questions for me to answer because there are too many that I’d like to meet. I’ve been lucky enough to get acquainted with some amazing fictional characters. So I’m going to artfully dodge this one…
3. Have you ever met anyone famous? If so, who, when and where?
I’ve actually met a couple, but let me tell you about meeting Billy Joel. He came to the University of Delaware where I was teaching as part of a 1996 Q & A tour of certain campuses. I got to ask a question and later, when the event was over, we all rushed the stage to meet him. I still have the shirt I wore that night. Yes, I have washed it since then.
4. Finish this sentence: If I had to give up one of the five senses, I’d give up…
…my sense of taste probably. I know it’s odd because there are certain foods I love and there is nothing like the taste of a properly brewed coffee. But my hearing and vision are more important to me. And if I kept my sense of smell I’d at least be able to smell the coffee brewing…
5. Where is your happy place?
If you mean where I have most enjoyed being? New Zealand. No question. If you mean places I go on a regular basis? I’m proud to say right now it’s my home office. I say ‘proud’ because I put it together the way I wanted it and it came out all right.
6. What is one piece of writing advice you can offer aspiring authors?
In a word, write. Don’t stop. Keep writing. Even if it’s a few sentences. Even if it’s something silly, write. Get in the habit of it and hone the craft.
7. What subject did you hate the most in high school? And like the most?
Unfortunately I had some very poor science teachers in high school, so those were the classes I most disliked – particularly physics. The class I liked the most? English, no question.
8. Who among your friends, families, neighbours, colleagues, etc. was most surprised that you wrote a book?
My work colleagues (with one exception) were the most surprised.
9. $10,000 dollars just fell into your lap. What will you do with it?
I will use it to travel. My goal? To meet in person the bloggers and bllogger/writers who mean the most to me. Life is too short not to reach out. I know $10,000 won’t even come close to covering it all but it’ll be a good start.
10. Do you think there is any truth to Astrology or Zodiac signs?
I don’t swear by astrology, no. I think people are far too complex and affected by too many factors for astrology or any other one element to explain it all. But I will say this: in an informal poll taken of my doctoral cohort, it came out that of the twelve of us, six were Sagittarians. Do with that as you will…
11. If you could have any musician/composer/group/singer – whether living or dead – provide a soundtrack or a playlist for your latest book, who would you choose and why?
Oh, come on now, Jill! You didn’t know the answer to that already? Really? ;-) In all seriousness I would choose Billy Joel. No question and no hesitation. He’s supremely talented, has a real respect for fans, and works very hard at what he does. And his work is varied enough that the soundtrack/playlist wouldn’t be ‘sound-the-same.’
Now, I’m supposed to pass the baton on to eleven other blogger/writers. But I don’t like making anyone feel obligated. So instead of that, here is what I will do. I’m going to invite you to visit Jill’s excellent blog and website. Then, I’m going to ask you to check out her books Blood and Groom, Dead Light District and The Lies Have it. They’re easily available on U.S. and U.K. Amazon for very, very reasonable prices and I can recommend them. Seriously, give ’em a try. Jill’s Sasha Jackson is a terrific character, the Toronto setting is very well done and the mysteries are engaging. I really like the sense of humour in the novels too. Folks, let’s all give Jill (and Sasha) some love. G’head – check it out!
*NOTE: The title of this post is a line from Billy Joel’s And so it Goes.