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Getting to Know You

Being nosy, sorry, make that inquisitive, is all part of being a writer – we like to know things, lots of things. Some are burning questions, others are just little bits of knowledge that we need to satisfy our curiosity.  As a group we have all got to know each other pretty well, but there’s always room for improvement and, as Celia has been shortlisted for the Novelicious Undiscovered competition, we thought we should find out a bit more about our girl by asking her a question each.  Before we did, however, we all wrote a sentence about Celia.

One sentence about Celia

Sue : Celia is wonderfully witty and caring, she is also a lot taller than me, especially when she’s in heels and I’m in flats – I look up to her in more ways than one.

Jan:  Celia is a truly lovely lady with a big smile and a fabulous sense of humour that quite often has me laughing out loud.

Laura : I admire and respect Celia J. Anderson and am honoured we are friends. Celia’s capacity for love and humour is something to which I aspire.

Liz : Celia’s smile beams as brightly as her superb personality – she is one of life’s treasures and I’m very lucky to have her as a friend!

Vanessa: Celia is gorgeously warm and fabulously funny and has a great ability to put people at their ease – within minutes of meeting her, it was as though I’d known her my whole life.

Catherine: Celia is a great friend and a wonderful talent: witty, pithy and sure to go far with her writing.

Debbie:  ‘I still can’t believe Celia is that old, and I’m so glad to have found her at the Festival of Romance Weekend.

What we want to know about Celia

Sue : If you could be anyone for one day, who would it be and why?

Celia: That’s a good one, Sue. Hmmm. I’d really like to be a man for a day for all sorts of reasons – mainly to see what makes them tick and what makes everything work, if you know what I mean! Maybe some sort of bigwig politician with responsibilities for Education so I could ban OFSTED for ever and give schools a massive yearly budget for books, or a really fast Olympic runner so I can see what it’s like to run properly without bits wobbling…or should that be wobbling bits?

Jan:  Who or what makes you belly-laugh?

Celia: This is going to be a long list – on an everyday basis, my daughters and husband are very funny, and online (and in the flesh) you Romaniacs make me laugh loads. On TV I love Victoria Wood, French & Saunders, Peter Kay, Bill Bailey, the entire cast of Father Ted and Green Wing and Eric Morecambe (because he reminds me of my dad.) My favourite sitcom moment of all time is the episode of Father Ted when Mrs Doyle teeters for ages and then topples off the windowsill. And Monty Python. And Blackadder. And The Young Ones. I’ll stop now.

Laura : What gives you your resolve and amazing ability to carry on through thick and thin?

Celia: My family and friends are the main reason for this. When times have been pretty grim, they’ve rallied round with cake, wine, hugs and lots of love and laughs. Also I was lucky  to have had a Mum and Dad who were constantly loving and supportive, and now there are the wonderful Romaniacs too! My pet hate is people who say ‘Why me?’  Stuff happens, it’s how you deal with it that counts. Oh, and chocolate is vital, that goes without saying.

Vanessa : If you could have written any book in the world, what would it be?

Celia: That’s really hard, Vanessa. I’m always finding new ones to wish I’d written but if only one had to be chosen, I think it might be the last of Philip Pullman’s Dark Materials trilogy, The Amber Spyglass. It combines everything I love to read about in one book – fantasy with real people, other similar worlds that are really believable, love, tension…and the title is perfect. I love the word ‘amber’. And it answers all the questions I wanted to ask and still makes me want a fourth one in the series.

Liz :  What is the best bit of advice you have had about writing?

Celia: Not to be offended by rejection letters. I practice that one regularly! All the best bits of advice seem to have been about not giving in – until I went to the Festival of Romance and met the Romaniacs I only had a couple of writing friends, and comparing notes is so valuable when you think things are going nowhere. I wouldn’t have known about the Novelicious competition if one of you hadn’t mentioned it, and having a support network makes you much braver about putting your work out there in the big scary world.

Catherine: If you could have dinner with anyone (dead or alive) who would you share a candlelit supper with?

Celia: Can it be a whole dinner party, Catherine? If so, I would invite Victoria Wood, Princess Diana, Michael Palin, George Harrison, Bill Bailey, and My-Grandma-Millie-Who-Died-Before-I-Was-Born. I have been told that we share the same sense of humour and would like to see if they make her larf. (Not George – he would be singing and strumming his guitar gently in the background.) Also, I’d like to know what Diana was really like and more importantly, why she wore those pop socks in the press photo of when she came out of the hospital clutching Baby William. I’ve always wondered.

Debbie: What do you consider to be your strengths of character, and your weaknesses?

Celia: I asked my youngest daughter to help me with this and she came straight out with a weakness – impatience! I don’t know what she means at all. I only said I wanted the answer immediately. She also mentioned the word stroppy, although she did say that she has met worse. On the good side,I think I’m quite upbeat and positive, which can probably get a bit sickening after a while. And I like to larf.

In case, you’re wondering what’s happened to our ninth Romaniac, Lucie – unfortunately, she hasn’t got internet access at the moment but I’m sure she would say some equally lovely things about ‘our Celia’ .

Thank you Celia for your great answers and good luck with the Novelicious Undiscovered competition!

Voting for the Novelicious Undiscovered 2012 contest is now open

Click here to register your vote

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12 thoughts on “Getting to Know You

  1. First of all, congratulations to Celia on making it into the nominations list: what an achievement, whoop! Secondly, as always, you Romaniacs simply make me smile with your caring and entertaining and always fresh blog posts. How do you come up with all these ideas? (The answer is obvious: bring together a group of highly talented writers, and you’ll never have a dull moment!).

    Celia, my biggest fault is probably also that I am inpatient. We have the ‘when I say now, I mean now’ discussion quite a lot in our house. My boys haven’t dared to call me stroppy yet, but I’m sure that’ll come with age (theirs, not mine) and they wouldn’t be wrong, just occasionally, either. Thanks for your wonderful answers, I feel like I’m getting to know you!

    • Thanks so much, Nicky – you’re always so supportive of the things we do. I think nine heads are definitely better than one, and the pressure is a lot less when you’re not just blogging by yourself. These Romaiacs are very good at carrying you when life is giving you a kicking too!

      Hope to meet you in the flesh soon – why does that sound so pervy?

      Celia xxx

  2. A dinner party? Well of course you can stretch it to an imaginary dinner party, Celia! I’ve voted for your excellent first chapter and fingers crossed it comes out as a winner! We think it deserves to!

    Catherine x

    • Hey, Catherine – that’s really good of you. I get more anxious every time I read another of the entries, have given it up now as no nails left!

      Think my dinner party would be quite good fun so long as Diana didn’t flirt with Mr Palin and make me cross.

      Love (see you on the road trip)

      Celia xxx

  3. Oh thanks Edith (I love that name, might pinch it for my next heroine, if you’ll lend it out?)
    The only thing I know about the voting is that you can’t seem to vote twice from the same computer even if it’s a different person & email voting. Spooky!

    Celia xxx

    • Hi Sarah – good to see you here. Hope all’s well in you world? It’s great fun answering all these questions, felt like a right celeb!

      See you at the conference?

      Celia xxx

  4. Fist of all, well done Celia for gettin shortlsted for the Novelicious Award. Fingers crossed for you and the other RNA NWS authors. I’ve read them all and am still dithering where to put my cross as they are all fabulous. Lovely to learn so much about you, Celia as we appear to like lots of similar things. Happy writing to you and your fellow Romaniacs.

    • Yes, there are some great stories up there, Lizzie – I haven’t voted yet either. Thanks for your comments and for supporting the Romaniacs; much appreciated. Glad we’ve got lots in common; hope to get to one of the Leicester chapter meetings soon,

      Celia xxx

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