December is almost here, so Lucy-Anne Holmes has arrived to get us into the holiday mood before the season really kicks off!
Lucy-Anne grew up in Chalfont St Peter, about 20 miles northwest of London. She's devoted to her lovely parents, a beautiful older sister to whom she dedicated "Unlike a Virgin," and a lovely brother who's a farmer. Her degree is in English Literature, which was started in Cardiff, ended in London with a detour to Miami in the middle. Lucy-Anne started a blog called "A Spinster's Quest" just before her 30th birthday (probably as a result of white wine). As a result of the blog, she got a literary agent and produced her first novel, "50 Ways to Find a Lover." That was followed by "The (Im)perfect Girlfriend" and now "Unlike a Virgin" (reviewed here). Her "loves" range from her mum's roast dinner to vintage clothes to a good costume drama. She also loves open fires, which are good for roasting chestnuts! (Check out her list!) Lucy-Anne is here to answer some fun holiday questions and share her favorite holiday recipe.
If you want to know more about Lucy-Anne, visit her on Facebook, Twitter and her website.
Author photo courtesy of Charlie Hopkinson
What is your favorite winter holiday themed novel?
Oh, I am so sorry, I won’t be winning any prizes for originality but it has to be Bridget Jones’s Diary. I love the way it starts with her list of New Years Resolutions. The novel brilliantly captures that feeling of being out of control with the over indulgences of the Christmas season, whilst also rampantly planning to give up all vices in the New Year.
What is your favorite winter activity?
Well, I adore dusk in winter. I find it such a dreamy time, when the day hovers before merging into night. My parents live in a coastal town called Eastbourne, on the South coast of England. I love walking along the seafront at dusk in the winter there, the air is crisp, the Christmas lights are on and I’m all snuggly wrapped up in a wooly hat and scarf.
What is your favorite winter holiday song?
Oh dear, I am thoroughly unoriginal again! But it has to be The Pogues and Kirsty McCall, "Fairy Tale of New York." I never tire of listening to it, which is just as well, because for about 6 weeks over Christmas in London you can’t move two steps without being ambushed by it. It’s a great song to sing along to and I do rather a good Shane McGowan, if I do say so myself.
What is your favorite winter holiday tradition?
I am a huge fan of the cold turkey sandwich with Branston pickle. One year, at Christmas dinner we ate all the turkey, so there was none left over for sandwiches. It really was very upsetting.
What is your favorite winter holiday movie?
It has to be Love Actually. Uh oh! The Unoriginality Police have just turned up with a warrant for my arrest! But it’s just the perfect Christmas rom-com. I always get teary at the end and Bill Nighy’s faded rock star Billy Mack singing "Christmas Is All Around" is genius. Quite often I watch the opening scene of the film, where he records the song in the studio, on Youtube, as a little two-minute writing break. It never fails to make me laugh.
Easy Quick Yummy Healthy Pancakes
My friend Danielle introduced me to these delicious devils, but they are the brain-child of Jamie Oliver, who my mother and I have quite a man sized crushes on!
1 mug self raising flour
1 mug milk
1/2 mug raisins
Either 1 apple or 1 pear grated into batter mix
1 knob of butter
Beat it all together.
Heat griddle pan.
Add a knob butter.
Drop spoonfuls of mix into pan.
Turn them when the bubbles burst on surface.
Serve with plain yogurt, maple syrup and blueberries and a nice cup of tea.
*You may have to find the right conversions for "mug" and "knob."
Special thanks to Lucy-Anne for visiting with us today and to Hannah Hargrave at Little, Brown for facilitating the interview.