Monday, September 26, 2011

Indulging in sweets with Sue Watson...plus a book giveaway!

**Giveaway is now closed**

Today, we welcome Sue Watson to share with us her debut novel, "Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes," published in early September 2011. Sue was born in Manchester and graduated from Manchester Polytechnic. She worked as a journalist for various tabloid newspapers and women's magazines. Sue transitioned into the television industry working as a producer for BBC. Sue lives in Worcestershire with her husband, daughter, two cats and a goldfish.

I don't know any chick lit lover who won't indulge themselves with classic chick lit fun and yummy cake recipes. To help in this matter, Sue has three e-books of "Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes" to give to some lucky readers anywhere in the world!

To learn more about Sue Watson please visit her on Facebook, Twitter, her blog and read the first three chapters of "Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes" at her website.


MP: What is your usual writing routine?
SW: Well I would love to tell you that I wake up each morning and skip to my desk where I write 1,000 words before breakfast and continue to write all day, stopping only for a light snack of leaves and mineral water. Unfortunately I don’t! Once my husband and daughter have left for school and work I tidy up... eat breakfast... start my diet... Tweet my friends and drink several cups of coffee. Next I put the TV on just in case there’s anything that will inspire me ("Frasier," "Ugly Betty"... this is research....honestly!) I then break my diet and eat too much cake. By about noon I’m finally ready to write and I sit at the kitchen table which overlooks the garden and I prepare myself by tidying my pens, checking out a few online shopping sites and before you know it – it’s way past lunchtime and more cake.
On a good day I will write solidly from about noon until 4pm, but if I get a call from the girls to meet them for emergency lattes or lunch... I have to drop everything. Well I can’t let my buddies down! If I haven’t had a good writing day I tell myself I will be good tomorrow (just like dieting really). Of course I rarely stick to this promise, the deadline looms and I end up having to work through the night, while eating my own body weight in cake!

MP: What was the biggest challenge you faced while writing "Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes?"
SW: The biggest challenge was devoting all my time to something that may never see the light of day. Like all new writers you have to commit to the book – but you don’t know until you’ve found a publisher that it will lead to anything. I think in the first instance, you have to write for the sheer love of it. I found writing this was quite cathartic for me – I had been through the mum/work struggle and writing about it really felt like therapy.

MP: How do you deal with bouts of writers block?
SW: I have to say I haven’t (so far) had a complete block. I have days that are better than others when I feel I’ve written a great scene that’s sharp and funny and the characters have all behaved exactly as I want them to. However there are days when things don’t flow and I’m not funny or sharp and I just use those days to move the narrative along ... I find baking and eating helps on those slow days.

MA: When you found out you were going to have your book published, how did you celebrate?
SW: I bought a flamingo-pink laptop! The whole family had been sharing one laptop and I’d written Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes on it which was impossible as I had to break off from writing every time another member of the family needed the laptop for homework or banking etc. Once I had the book deal I knew there would be edits and a second book so I was determined to have a laptop all to myself so no-one could stop my flow.

MP: Did you base your main characters on yourself or people you know?
SW: I think there’s a lot of me in Stella – we both worked in TV and struggled with our weight and being a mum/wife/career woman in a very young, trendy world full of size zero beauties. I know how Stella feels and I went with her on her journey, revisiting some of my own experiences along the way. As for friends – yes Stella’s friends and many of the characters in the novel are based on different elements of people I know or who I have worked with or met. Al, one of Stella’s best friends, is based on a very good friend of mine who inspired the idea for Al’s Gay Swimming group. Such a group exists (under a different name) and my friend flounces up and down that cocktail lane just like Al!

MA: If "Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes" were made into a movie, who would you cast in the lead roles?
LOVE this question... but it’s so hard to answer. I think Stella would have to be Brooke Elliot who plays Jane, the plus size girl whose body is inhabited by the soul of a supermodel in Drop Dead Diva. She’s a big, beautiful lady who would play a witty, intelligent heroine perfectly – and I think she’s fabulous. For Stella’s friend Al it would have to be Michael Urie who plays Marc St James in Ugly Betty – he has the energy and twisted humour that I love so much in Al.

MA: What is your favorite kind of cupcake?
SW: I love all of them – but my favorite is a coffee cupcake – the recipe is in the book – I like a strong coffee flavour, just like my cup of coffee. I ice them with coffee flavoured icing and top with a real chocolate coffee bean. Perfect to keep me going on those late writing nights when I need extra caffeine to stay awake and meet that deadline. Yum!

MA: Which female authors have inspired you the most?
SW: I LOVE Jen Lancaster and her book ‘Such a Pretty Fat,’ was a revelation to me. I love the way she is a big girl and she doesn’t apologise for it – I love her gutsy, witty, non-whingeing style too. She takes no prisoners!
I am also a huge Anne Tyler fan – I read her and wish I could write like her because it’s like she’s peeped into your soul and knows exactly how you’re feeling – and what real life is really like.

MP: If you could travel anywhere, where would you go and why?
SW: I recently achieved a lifelong ambition and visited NYC and The Magnolia Bakery – I love the US and our holidays of choice are usually Florida. Next year we’re planning a very special holiday to California and I can’t wait. I have never been so am using it as a ‘research’ excuse because I want to take Stella and her friends to Hollywood for the sequel to "Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes."

MA: What is your biggest addiction or vice?
SW: The three Cs – cakes, coffee and chocolate. I can’t choose one of those but I suppose if I had to – it would have to be fairy cakes!

(CLC: That must be how Sue "C's" it!)

Thanks to Sue for entertaining us with our answers and making us hungry for some sweet cupcakes, as well as for sharing her e-book with our readers. (We also must mention the "Ugly Betty" shout outs, as both Melissa A
and P LOVE that show!)

How to win "Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes":
Please comment below with your e-mail address.
(Please note: Entries without an e-mail address will NOT be counted. You can use AT and DOT to avoid spam. Or provide a link to your facebook page or blog if you can receive messages there.)

Bonus entries (can be listed all in one post):
1. Please tell us: If you could create your own cupcake, what would be the primary ingredient used and what flavor frosting would complement this tasty treat? Go ahead and name it if you wish....
2. Follow this blog and post a comment saying you are a follower (if you already follow, that's fine too).
3. Post this contest on Facebook or Twitter or in your blog, and leave a comment saying where you've posted it.
4. Join Chick Lit Central on Facebook. Edit settings if you don't want to receive a lot of messages at your e-mail account. Please read our posting guidelines, as well. (If you're already a member, let us know that too.)
5. Add a friend to our Facebook group. (Tell us who you added.) Be sure to remind them to edit their settings.

Giveaway ends October 2nd at midnight EST.

20 comments:

Audrey said...

My favorite cupcake flavor would probably be a vanilla honey, topped with a pistachio icing swirl. NOMNOM.

(psst..I totally stalk, I mean follow, you.

audrey AT planethausfrau DOT com

Kat said...

1) Love Ms. Watson's sense of humour! And now I totally want to read that Jen Lancaster novel!

2) Oh goodness... I have no imagination... My cupcake would probably be a banana peanut butter chocolate flavour with hazelnut icing... I don't even know how yummy that would taste.

3) I follow through GFC

4) Posted on facebook

5) I am a member of CLC

ladykathryn@rogers.com

Anonymous said...

Banana, most definitely, with a sweet peanut butter icing!

Britt T.

brittanyrtucker@yahoo.com

Kim W. said...

1. A chocolate banana cupcake with peanut butter icing!!

2. I follow the CLC blog

3. I posted this contest on Facebook

4. I am a member of CLC on Facebook

kewalker1972@gmail.com

Linda Kish said...

I would love to read this book.

My cupcake choice is always very plain...vanilla cupcake with buttercream frosting. Maybe a few sprinkles for color.

I am a GFC follower

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Stephanie said...

A white chocolate and cranberry cupcake with cream cheese frosting.

I'm a gfc follower

Skk25@aol.com

Nicky Wells said...

My favourite cupcake would be vanilla and maple syrup with a strawberry icing with lots of little silvery, sugary stars on the top, plus one real strawberry.

I would LOVE to win a copy of this book. And I adore Sue's interview!

I follow CLC on Twitter and Facebook.

Cheerio
Nicky

Margaret said...

Without a doubt it would have to be chocolate with chocolate icing and I would cal it devil's decadence.

I'm a follower.

Margaret
singitm@hotmail.com

Amy said...

Frosting would definitely be chocolate ganache! Love love ganache! Very had to pick only one ingredient. Primary ingredients: vanilla cake with chocolate chips baked inside and marshmallow/chocolate mousse filling.
I also love ALL of Jen Lancater's books!

I follow through GFC

I am an email subscriber

I follow and posted contest on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/amyrbromberg/posts/215906005139022

Tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/jam_njellygirl/status/118927891437322240

Amyrbromberg(at)gmail(dot)com

meandmom said...

I would like to read this book.

jeryl.marcus@gmail.com

meandmom said...

I would like a cupcake that is half chocolate and half vanilla and has half chocolate icing and half vanilla icing.

I am a subscriber.

I am a Facebook follower.

jeryl.marcus@gmail.com

Queen of Reading said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BRN2SHOP9 said...

I would create a Mint Chocolate Chip cupcake or a Girl Scout Thin Mint cupcake.

brn2shop9 at gmail dot com

BRN2SHOP9 said...

I follow via Facebook

brn2shop9 at gmail dot com

BRN2SHOP9 said...

I follow via twitter

brn2shop9 at gmail dot com

BRN2SHOP9 said...

I follow via GFC

brn2shop9 at gmail dot com

Jennifer S said...

Thank you so much for giving us all a chance to win!

Jennifersmith.ga (at) gmail (dot) com

1. I think I would like a cupcake that tasted like a Mocha Frappuccino (I have NO idea how to pull that off though) OR I would want one that was a nice rich chocolate cake with peanut butter icing (Reese's Cups are my not so secret addiction lol)

2. I am a follower :)

3. I posted on FB and twitter.
https://twitter.com/#!/lilmamaj81/status/119772424354021376
https://www.facebook.com/lilmamaj81/posts/171998846215122

4. I requested to join Chick Lit Central


(Can I commented a second time to so I can get my bonus entry for adding someone to the group? My request hasn't been accepted yet.)

ADR527 said...

My favorite cupcake flavor would be blueberry with a dark chocolate frosting.
I follow the blog

I follow on Facebook & Twitter

adr52775 at aol dot com

rosiepopsox said...

r.m.haigh@hotmail.co.uk

my main ingredient would be chocolate custard and it would have icing all on the top with a chocolate button to finish it of :)

joined chick lit central on fb :)

StereoQueenBee said...

1. Please tell us: If you could create your own cupcake, what would be the primary ingredient used and what flavor frosting would complement this tasty treat? Go ahead and name it if you wish....

Chocolate, maple & bacon cupcake. Yes I said BACON.

2. Follow this blog and post a comment saying you are a follower (if you already follow, that's fine too).

Already follow this blog.

3. Post this contest on Facebook or Twitter or in your blog, and leave a comment saying where you've posted it.

Facebook - Sabrina-Kate Eryou
Twitter - stereoqueenbee

4. Join Chick Lit Central on Facebook. Edit settings if you don't want to receive a lot of messages at your e-mail account. Please read our posting guidelines, as well. (If you're already a member, let us know that too.)

Am already a member.

queenofcrunk at gmail dot com