The Spotlight is on V.P Colombo today!
V.P has published a book of short stories and recipes called A Little Bit of Happiness.
I’m really happy to be able to share a bit about V.P and her writing with you today!
What would you like your readers to know about you? Good question. What would you like to know?
I decided to self-publish A Little Bite of Happiness because it’s a hybrid genre, a new kind of writing, and publishers are not generally inclined to publish short stories unless you’re already a world known author. At the time, I also physically needed to get it out into the world, and I’m glad I did.
What inspires you to write?
Deeply felt emotions, when they’re raw and you can’t get rid of it. The intensity of life.
Is there a genre you feel drawn to write or do you see yourself tackling a variety of genres in the future?
I would love to write different genres: children’s books, crime/thrillers, and maybe a memoir later on.
Can you describe your writing space?
I have two. One near the staircase, where my main desk, the desktop, the printer, and shelves filled with hundreds of books are; and one in my bedroom as the rest of the house gets freezing cold in winter and boiling hot in summer. I just set it up. It’s an Ikea white corner desk with some shelves filled with books on writing, elephants and Ganesh statues. A moon light and a Buddha on the top of it.
Can you tell us a bit about your writing process?
It takes a while. I have too many ideas and I really need to empty my mind, enter in a state of almost meditation to make sense of it. Once I’m set on a subject, a topic, a protagonist, it is still a slow process. Writing daily can help or not. I can spend weeks writing nonsense and it frustrates me. Most of the time, my writing happens in my subconscious and when I sit at my desk the story is already finished before I put it on paper. I just need to do several rewrites.
I have a ritual. I switch the phone off, close the internet. I put some mantras on, lit some incense and a candle, and wait few minutes. Then I’m ready to write.
What is your go to snack when writing?
I rarely snack when writing. My daughter would bring me lunch or dinner. I am French therefore I’m more a full meal person. I will always have a pot of tea though, hot chocolate time to time in winter, and a beer, a cocktail or a glass of wine on Saturday nights. If I snack it would be dark chocolate and almonds, or grilled chickpeas, rarely bounty or snickers.
Are any of your books or characters based on personal experiences or people in your life?
Of course. I think every writer transposes in one way or another her own life experiences and encounters. It doesn’t mean it is autobiographic. It can be a detail which will make a character human and relatable, or an emotion which is felt by most of us.
Do you have a favorite character or book you have written?
My second book is still in the early stages so it would have to be from A Little Bite of Happiness. Out of the forty-two short stories and vignettes, I have a soft spot for Lemon which was one of the hardest character to write, and also for Bacchus. Once I changed the point of view to I, and put myself into Bacchus’ skin, the story started to flow, and it was empowering to write.
Any hints as to what readers can expect next?
All I know is that it will be set in Australia.
When not writing your own books, who do you like to read?
I like to read in French, it relaxes my mind and I can dive into a story. Books written in English are always work for me. As English is not my native language, I’m always in learning mode: noticing the structure, trying to figure out clichés, the occurrence of certain words, etc… so it’s tiring.
I love Fred Vargas, Sandrine Collette, Olivier Norek, Balzac, Zola, Montesquieu, Stephen King.
Share a random fact or two that readers don’t know about you.
I love too many things to be able to choose. If asked what is my favourite whatever, it’s torture, I’ll give you a list of ten or twenty if not more.
I hated tattoos when I was in France. Since I moved to Australia, I grew to like them so much that my back is covered with cherry blossoms.
Sweet or Savory for snacks? Both
Do you have any pets? We have six fur babies at home. Four cats: Fluffy, Figaro, Merlin and Tigerlily; and two dogs: Lola and Luna.
Biggest pet peeve? When English natives use then instead of than.
Favorite vacation spot? The Daintree rainforest in Far North Queensland.
Morning or Night person? Definitely a night owl when it comes to writing.
Hobbies? I practice pole dancing.
A Little Bite of Happiness: 42 short stories, 24 French recipes
42 stories about food and its simple pleasures
24 recipes from a French pastry chef
Food is vital. It sustains us. And yet it also comes to define us. It expresses who we are and want to be. It anchors memories. It provides rituals. It is sensual. It can pleasure and surprise us.
In this book of stories, myths, dreams and recipes, V.P Colombo uses food as a metaphor to explore the human psyche, relationships and life in all its beauty and complexity. Here you’ll meet a lemon as a character in a story, a madeleine as folklore, journey through gardens of roses and get to know vanilla in a way that you never expected.
There are authentic French recipes too. From chocolate mousse to tarte aux pommes, learn how to bake all the classic desserts you’ll ever need to know simply and successfully.
About V.P Colombo
Parisian born and bred French pastry chef, V.P Colombo, currently lives in Sydney where she founded and ran Fleur de Sel, a homemade cake and dessert business, before dedicating her time to writing. Her macarons, like all her food created without artificial colourings and preservatives, were much loved at the Balmain market in Sydney, as were her scrumptious dessert tables created for weddings.
V.P left Paris, via Singapore, to arrive in Sydney in 2010, and stayed in Australia to create stability for her daughter. The challenges of immigration were compounded by severe depression and life threatening food allergies.
A Little Bite of Happiness emerged through this period as these challenges, combined with her passion for food, sparked her imagination as a writer. The resulting book, her first, is an homage to food, sensuality, love, loss and simply life in all its glory.
Connect with V.P
Website – https://www.vpcolombo-books.com/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/vpcolombo/
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/v.p.colombo/
V.P, thank you so much for taking the time to stop by and chat with me!
It’s always fun to get to spotlight a new to me author.
Readers, make sure you drop by and visit V.P at her social media sites to learn more about A Little Bite Of Happiness as well as her upcoming releases.
Have questions for V.P Colombo? Leave a comment and I’ll make sure she sees it!