What was the best thing about writing this book? How it brought me closer to my mother but also to people in the Italian community throughout Australia. Readers have shared their stories of migration and internment with me, which has been wonderful.
What was one of the best things that happened because of this book? Taking my mum back to Innisfail with me all those years after my nonna passed. We both felt like we had finally made sense of her life.
What other jobs have you had? Waitress, editor and proof-reader, university teacher, electorate officer and now a research director.
Which books do you recommend? A good mix of both fiction and non-fiction as well as classic novels that you’ve heard about but never got around to reading. I read ‘Dracula’ for the first time this year and loved it!
Which movies do you recommend? Documentaries. It’s reality TV for clever people.
What are your favourite products? My Filofax and my mini iPad – old school and new school!
What traditions from your childhood do you continue? I always bake a certain family cake at Christmas, Sciaccia Briacca. There is always a story before bedtime.
What is something that most people wouldn’t know about you? I was an extremely shy child.
What else would you like to write a book about? A reflection on the last ten years of research on Australians … only this is my 8th year as a researcher so it will have to wait awhile.
What are you working on next? A novel. Wish me luck.
Read my review of ‘The Italian Girl’ here.