…our interviewee is the lovely Lili Wilkinson. Lili is the prize-winning author of books for young adults and children. She likes blue brie cheese, Neil Finn and bears. Oh, and Christmas, of course
Food and family. Fairy lights. Decorating the tree. Burning a candle every night of December. Cooking an amazing feast for my very best friends a few weeks before Christmas, and participating in our Handmade Kris Kringle. Making pudding and mince pies and gingerbread. Cherries. Sunscreen. Eating too much. And the Muppet Christmas Carol. You can’t have Christmas without the Muppet Christmas Carol.
What was your favourite Christmas present ever?
My Grandpa made me a beautiful dolls house when I was little. It had windows and curtains and wallpaper and banisters and a chimney and everything.
What was your worst Christmas present ever?
An aunt once gave me a floral tissue box holder with teddy bear arms, legs and head. You pulled the tissues out of a hole where its stomach was supposed to be. It was like a taxidermy experiment gone wrong.
What book will you be reading this Christmas?
I always re-read Tolkien’s Letters from Father Christmas. And hopefully I’ll have some time to attack the growing pile of books by the bedside table.
If you ever had the chance to meet Santa what would you say?
‘Where’s my pony?’
Did you ever sneak a peek at your Christmas presents?
I’m pretty sure my mum is going to read this, so I might tactfully avoid that question. Oh look over there! There’s a dog riding a bicycle! He’s wearing a little hat! On the hat there is a cricket waving a tiny flag!
What’s your favourite Christmas song?
Favourite carol is O Holy Night. Favourite song is Sleigh Ride. But let’s face it, I love them all and have an iTunes playlist of Christmas music that is about 60 hours long.
Have you ever kissed someone under the mistletoe?
No, but maybe this year I’ll get lucky! (do we even have mistletoe in Australia?)
What food do you always eat too much of at Christmas time?
All of it. Turkey, ham, mince pies, pudding, gingerbread, chocolate.
If you could invite 5 people, alive or dead, to your Christmas dinner who would they be?
Mum. Dad. My boyfriend Michael. Jim Henson. Diana Wynne Jones.
Which reindeer is your favourite and why?
L Frank Baum wrote a book called The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus, about how Santa grew up in Oz. As well as the traditional reindeer, there’s also Racer, Pacer, Fearless, Peerless, Ready, Steady, Feckless, and Speckless. I’m going with Feckless, cause it sounds like he needs some cheering on.
If you had your own reindeer what would you call it?
Martha Stewart. Just because.
What decoration do you put on the top of your Christmas tree?
It’s sort of a red sparkly… spike. It looks better than it sounds.
Read the latest on Lili and her books at her website and blog www.liliwilkinson.com.au
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