Posted by Juliet Madison
To celebrate my new release, THE JANUARY WISH, the first book in my small town series set in Tarrin’s Bay; The Town of New Beginnings, I’m hosting a new interview segment called ‘At Home With…’
Today, we’re paying a visit to Téa Cooper…
1. Hi Téa, where are you from and how long have you lived there?
Hi Juliet! Great to visit. I live on 100 acres of bush just outside a tiny little village in the Hunter Valley, NSW called Wollombi. I moved here about five years ago – I used to live about closer to the big smoke but when I gave up teaching I decided I liked the idea of living in a smaller community.
I love my house. It’s built from the rock that forms most of my “backyard”. (Think the movie Picnic at Hanging Rock). I love the outlook – virgin bush one side and bucolic cattle grazing amongst the vines on the creek flats on the other side, the peace and the isolation. I also love living in a village – being one of the “locals”. I know it is a bit contradictory…that’s me!
3. Do you have a favourite local cafe, restaurant, bar, club, business, or store? Give them a plug here!
I have two favourite cafés – one is Café Wollombi, affectionately known as The Girls. They do the best juices, a mean lamb burger, delicious pasta and prawns and a Caesar salad to die for. The other is Panino Restaurant, Café & Deli, better known as Bruno’s – delicious Italian style food and of course entertainment courtesy of Bruno himself! And then there is The Great Northern Trading Post – Laguna to the locals – Friday night is jam night and some really good food!
Poppy – the Rotweiller shares her home with me!
5. What is your favourite room in the house and why?
That’s difficult – I’m spoilt. It depends on the weather and my mood. A toss up between the “library”, my study and the sitting room-kitchen-dining room, one big room with an open fire and an air conditioner!
Too easy…I live in a seriously bushfire prone area. No mucking around. Poppy and I can be out in five! My MacBook Pro, my passport and a rather eclectic collection of jewellery I’ve acquired over the years – none of which I wear very often!!
7. If you had a magic wand, what’s one thing you would change about your home or your town?
I wouldn’t so much change anything as buy a helicopter…I’d like to live here in this environment but be able to avoid the wretched F3 – the freeway from hell – when I wanted to go to Sydney.
[Juliet ~ Oh, that would be convenient. I might wish for one too!]
8. It’s movie night at your place, the popcorn’s out, and everyone’s nabbed their favourite couch corner or armchair… what movie/s will we watch?
No – sorry. We wouldn’t do it here. Wollombi has its very own outdoor film night every so often and it’s pizza from Panino and Noyce Bros wine and a variety of films. The most recent was The Graduate and Priscilla is up next, followed by Casablanca.
[Juliet ~ An outdoor film night sounds fantastic!]
9. Imagine you have the luxury of a chef for a night and you’ve invited people over for a dinner party, what would you have the chef cook?
Lobster tails on the BBQ with a garden salad (actually I don’t really need the chef).
10. Name three books on your To Be Read bookshelf or e-reader:
Twiggy: The High-Stakes Life of Andrew Forrest by Andrew Burrell
Girl of Shadows by Deborah Challinor
The Far Pavilions by M M Kaye (a re-read.)
11. Name something unique or uncommon that you have in your pantry or fridge:
A weird assortment of Indian spices – I lived in India once upon a time and like to play with them!
12. If you could live anywhere for one year, where would you go?
Oh! That’s hard…probably Paris because I’ve never “lived” there.
13. You’ve just received a phone call from a friend or relative, and they’ll be arriving in five minutes for a visit. What do you do?
a) Relax on the couch until they arrive.
b) Put the kettle on; place some (probably homemade) snacks onto a tray; set the table; put flowers into a vase; and light a candle (and maybe even make some place cards with your super calligraphy skills).
c) Put the kettle on; tip out a few cookies onto a plate; check your reflection in the mirror, and wait.
d) Freak out; shove excess household clutter under beds, in cupboards, drawers, and the garage; trip over something in the process; hold an ice pack to your bruised forehead while swearing profusely; check the mirror to see if you’re still in pyjamas; frantically change into suitable clothing whilst simultaneously holding ice pack to your head; fall over again; alternate ice pack between head and location of new injury; then shove ice pack under bed and greet visitors with the fakest smile of pure calm you can muster.
Definitely (a)…it’s called “Catch as Catch Can” around here!
>>Even though Téa would probably love you to pay a visit, why not visit her online right now?
>>And help her buy that helicopter by buying her book, Matilda’s Freedom here: 😉
An unconventional woman clashes with colonial society in this spicy and sweet Australian-set historical romance.
His carefree bachelor days over, Christopher Matcham returns to Sydney to take responsibility for his mother, two stepsisters, and the family property. Fortune smiles on him when he is introduced to Matilda Sweet, a woman in need of work. Though unusual, Christopher senses that her fresh ideals and positive outlook can only benefit his sisters, so he hires her as a companion.
By the time they arrive at Christopher’s family home, the two are fast friends. But Matilda’s unorthodox ways and her convict heritage make her a second-class citizen to the family. Christopher has responsibilities, and they include an advantageous match. A breeches-wearing, creek-swimming, plain-talking convict’s daughter will never figure in. After all, romance is a luxury the upper classes cannot afford . . .
>>WIN! You could win an ebook of your choice by Tea Cooper. Simply leave a comment below and Poppy will choose a winner! Open worldwide. Winner drawn Wed 29th Jan.