CHRISTMAS WITH… Susanne Bellamy
What are your plans for Christmas 2015?
A typical Aussie Christmas at the beach with family and friends. Both our children’s partners have birthdays close to Christmas so through them, we are re-establishing the combined Christmas/birthdays we used to have with my parents, both of whose birthdays were also close to Christmas!
Tell us about a usual Christmas in your home?
Family traditions differ, so when I married my husband, we had choices to make about what shape ‘our’ Christmas would take. In my family, we used to hand out presents one at a time and watch the recipient open theirs before the next person received theirs. And we always started with the youngest receiving the first present. Which was cool for me as the baby of the family! My husband’s family nominated a ‘Santa’ person to hand out presents and it’s a noisy, chaotic, paper-ripping time. Nowadays, on our nuclear family Christmas morning, we have reverted to my family tradition so we can all enjoy each present as it’s unwrapped.
Any gift in particular that you’d love to see wrapped under the tree?
Now my children are grown, I guess I won’t be getting any more handmade pressies from them, which were always my favourite. But there is a new Il Divo album I would like! Or a pedicure.
What is a typical Christmas lunch and/or dinner at your house?
I make a delicious Layered Garden Salad that looks really pretty and is fairly substantial. There is always turkey (often cold as we are at the coast where the temperature is usually around 30C+) and lots of colourful salads. With two vegetarians in the family, we’ll have to extend the non-meat repertoire more.
Tell us, what is the one dish that gets served every single year? Is there a story behind this?
We are in a state of change with our traditional Christmas meal but the roast potatoes we made last year are going to become a new tradition. From a Jamie Oliver recipe, which I’ve included here, they were fabulous!
Your best Silly Season survival tip?
Make every second drink H2O! And build a walk into every day to balance out the extra calories imbibed.
What will you be reading this Christmas?
A number of writer friends have Christmas stories coming out, and I will read as many as I can, but I’ve also got Outlander waiting for a long holiday break. Unbelievably, I’ve not yet read Diana Gabaldon’s series and I’ve been promising myself I would get into it this year.
What have been your big achievements in 2015?
Becoming a #1 Bestselling Author with my rural romance and successfully challenging myself to write in two different genres. I’ve been involved in two quite different series, both of which I’ve loved. The first was an historical romantic suspense, “Winning the Heiress’ Heart”, part of The Emerald Quest. Set in Hawaii in 1960, I drew on my mother’s wartime experience for background for my heroine.
The other is “Second Chance Love”, part of a rural series, A Bindarra Creek Romance, which has been doing very well. I was thrilled to reach #1 Bestselling Author in Westerns on Amazon Australia with this book. I discovered I really enjoy writing small town stories and this is a good segue into the next question!
What are your plans/goals for 2016?
Two key stories are in the pipeline. The first is a new rural series set in the north west of Queensland; the first story is about a doctor and pilot working for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
The second project is writing book 2 in my protector series. Book 1 is under submission and I’m waiting nervously for a reply. It’s set in Nepal, which I visited many years ago. If you’ve seen the movie, “Everest”, the journey up to Base Camp shows much of the setting of my story!
The Wish List (from Second Chance Café)
Julie Aster has worked hard to make the animal shelter a success but money is short. Then the sexy Jack Shulz sweeps into her life with an answer to all her problems.
But when a client lets out a secret about Jack, she wonders if she really knows him.
Can she trust this man who seems to have all the answers… and more to the point, can she trust her heart?
WIN the AusRom Today Christmas Extravaganza: 24 Christmas/Holidays themed novels from some of the best Australian romance writers! To win, leave your name and email address here and head on over to Facebook and share our pinned post (hint: it’s the picture of the prize!).
Susanne has kindly offered a copy of her novel, One Night in Tuscany, to a lucky reader who answers the question: Where would you like to spend Christmas this year? Leave a comment on this post for your chance to win!