CHRISTMAS WITH… Sarah Mayberry
What are your plans for Christmas 2015?
We alternate Christmas lunch each year – one year with my family, one year with my husband’s. This year it’s my family’s turn, so that means lots of people, lots of food, and lying around afterwards complaining about having eaten too much. Bring it on!
Tell us about a usual Christmas in your home?
We don’t have children, so typically my husband and I wake up and exchange presents, then put on our Sunday best and drive to wherever lunch is at with a car full of booty for our loved ones. We do lunch with one group, afternoon tea with another, then dinner somewhere else (I blame my divorced parents for the multiple celebrations!). It’s a fun but exhausting day.
Any gift in particular that you’d love to see wrapped under the tree?
I have nothing in my sights this year. Truthfully, I have everything I need – my gorgeous husband, my amazing dog, and a great family and group of friends. Everything else is gravy!
What is a typical Christmas lunch and/or dinner at your house?
We do turkey, ham, and pork (with crackling, naturally), roast potatoes and pumpkin, and sometimes other veggies. Dessert is always pudding.
Tell us, what is the one dish that gets served every single year? Is there a story behind this?
Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without my maternal nan’s Christmas pudding. She’s no longer with us, but either myself or my sister cooks her recipe every year, and we have it with brandy sauce and vanilla ice-cream. It’s delicious – very simple, just lots of brandy-soaked dried fruit with no fancy additions like peel or nuts, and has been a mainstay of Christmas every year of my life. It takes 6 hours to boil in a pudding cloth, so making it is a major commitment. But it’s worth it.
Essentials for an Aussie Christmas…
Family. Too much food. Lots of laughter. Christmas crackers with bad jokes and tissue hats. And it will either be stinking hot or it will rain or day.
Your best Silly Season survival tip?
Pace yourself and dress for comfort as well as celebration.
What will you be reading this Christmas?
I have a stockpile of Christmas novellas from my fellow Tule authors that I will dip into to get myself in the Christmas mood, and hopefully a grab bag of other great reads from some of my favourite authors. I need to go on the hunt for new releases to add to my Kindle.
What have been your big achievements in 2015?
I was thrilled with the reception the second book in my Brothers Ink series (Anticipation) received earlier in the year. And I was also proud of myself for overcoming my fear of public speaking to do a radio interview with the BBC World Service about my script writing for Neighbours, as well as co-presenting a session at the Romance Australia conference and being on a panel at the Melbourne Writer’s Festival.
What are your plans/goals for 2016?
To write more Brothers Ink books and to finally kick of a contemporary romance series that I’ve had planned for a few years now.
His Christmas Gift
Since tragedy estranged defense attorney Jenna Macintosh from her family, she’s done her best to pretend Christmas doesn’t exist. Not so easy this year when she needs to work with client Lacey Gallagher, who is living on her brother Sawyer’s Christmas tree farm. All those fragrant pines dripping with twinkling lights are bad enough, but when disaster strikes, Jenna is stuck alone in a wooded cabin with Sawyer, the hottest man she’s ever met.
Experience has taught Sawyer Gallagher that smart city women like Jenna don’t want men like him, but when Jenna falls ill, he must abandon his plan to keep his distance and soon he’s trying to work out ways to make her his—and not just for Christmas.
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Sarah has kindly offered the set of His Christmas Gift and Three Nights Before Christmas by Kat Latham (the companion book His Christmas Gift featuring the sister of Sarah’s hero).