The Christmas Café is your latest and very festive novel! Can you tell us a little bit about it?
With pleasure! The Christmas Café is a book about grief and love. Bea is the protagonist. She is a 53-year old who has been recently widowed and trying to get her life back on track after her tragic loss. She throws herself into her job – she works in a trendy café and deli in Sydney, trying to give her life some meaning and trying to come to term with the fact that she might be on her own forever. The book is set in Edinburgh and Sydney around December and explores what it would feel like to be pulled between two cities, one that held your head, and the other your heart…
Bea is the protagonist in this novel. What is your favourite part of her personality?
Great question – I really like Bea, she faces her fears and steps out of her comfort zone to grab life and reclaim her own happiness! She is a great example to us all, that just when you think life might be slowing down, when you have more years behind you than ahead and all thoughts of romance have fled, be open to the idea that fate might have other ideas. She’s a refreshing character. This is what I like about her. She’s not afraid of going out and finding new adventures, even if that means jetting across to the other side of the country!
Where do you find the inspiration for your novels? Do they just appear to do you have to make a conscious effort to come up with an idea?
I am very, very lucky in that my novels arrive in my head fully formed, very quickly. I might see something or hear a song and POW! A story pops into my head in a about a minute and it’s always complete and never changes – I just have to write it down.
As it’s nearing Christmas it wouldn’t be right if I didn’t ask a few Christmassy questions! What is your favourite Christmassy food?
Trifle! I don’t have it any other time of the year, but Christmas Day night, while watching rubbish TV, there’s nothing like it. With the family all flaked out – fighting for space on the sofa, the kitchen work surfaces full of dirty glasses and left over turkey, I ignore the mess and snuggle up to my man with a nice bowl of trifle! Bliss!
What is your favourite Christmas book?
Can I have a poem instead? ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas’ – by Clement Clarke Moore. Oh my Goodness, crying as I write. I love this poem, a powerful reminder of my childhood and my lovely, lovely grandad reciting to me as he tucked me in on Christmas Eve…
Can you tell us anything about what you’re working on next?
Yes, happily. I am currently working on a fab new novel called ‘Another Love’ – Romilly’s story. She is a happy, successful wife and mum whose life is about to unravel due to her horrible relationship with alcohol. It’s a cracker. No pun intended!
The Christmas Café by Amanda Prowse is published on 22nd October (£7.99, Head of Zeus). Amanda Prowse will be appearing at the Southampton’s Festival of Words on Tuesday 27th October, for more information visit http://www.sotospeakfestival.org/amanda-prowse-2/