I have had the opportunity to get to know Anita Hughes through her books and my personal blog Writer’s Corner. She is debuting with us at DeKalb County Public Library with her book Christmas in Paris. Anita is stopping by so that our readers here could have an opportunity to get to know this great author.
So Anita what are five interesting facts that readers should know about you?
I was born and raised in Sydney, Australia.
I live on the beach in Dana Point, California, and love to walk along the ocean.
I have five children! And still find time to write.
I am a huge frozen yogurt fan and have it every night for dessert.
I love 19th century British literature: Thomas Hardy, D.H. Lawrence, George Eliot, Wilkie Collins.”
My favorite thing about Christmas is that the whole family is together. The children are now old enough to buy each other presents, so it is a very festive time and everyone really enjoys it. We usually spend three full days together and walk on the beach and cook and have ping pong tournaments.”
One aspect of your writing I love is how you have your heroine set in a high position in both her career and family background. This aspect reminds me of authors such as Judith Krantz and Barbara Taylor Bradford. How have these ladies influenced your writing?
Yes! I have read everything by Judith Krantz and many books by Barbara Taylor Bradford. I am the biggest fan of Krantz’s books and Princess Daisy and Mistral’s Daughter really influenced my writing. I have always been a huge reader and devoured all the big, glossy, blockbusters.
Do you plan to continue to use exotic locations for your settings of your future stories?
Yes, my next book, White Sand, Blue Sea, is set in St. Bart’s and comes out in April. Emerald Coast, set in Sardinia, comes out next August and there will be a Christmas book set in a gorgeous location next year too.”
Has your childhood played a part in where your stories are set?
My parents were European and as a child we traveled a lot. I also grew up with a large world view, living in Australia and being exposed to different cultures. I use a lot of the places I fell in love with as a child – Lake Como, Cannes, Rome, Paris, in my books.
How much experience do you have using libraries in the various places you live?
I adore libraries. When my children were small, we were in the library almost every afternoon. I would park them in the children’s section and read everything in the fiction section. I love our local library in Dana Point, which is a block from my house.”
What is your favorite activity to do in the library?
I like to read the first couple of pages of a dozen different fiction books. There are so many authors I am interested in, but don’t get the time to read.
Why is self-discovery so important in your novels?
As a wife and mother, I know women don’t get a lot of time for introspection. But it is important to take care of oneself at every stage in life. So I think self-discovery is very important for growth and self esteem.
Do all your novels start with the character in their lowest position to rise by the end of the novel?
I hadn’t really thought about it that way. I think they all start with the character having a dilemma. And usually in solving the dilemma, she discovers her best self along the way.
Thank you, Anita Hughes, for joining us today. I am a fan of Anita’s work and cannot wait to see more of her books at DeKalb County Public Library. Please check out Christmas in Paris. If you like Anita then you might also be interested in: Elin Hilderbrand, Fannie Flagg, and JoJo Moyes.
Thank you so much for the support, Jencey! And I hope your readers enjoy my books.