We’re in for a fun post today. I’m delighted to welcome a “Naughty Ninja” to my blog, author Lily Malone, talking about her passion.Β 

LilyM_lowresWelcome Lily! Do you have a passion other than writing?Β 

Before I had children, and before writing became my hobby, I was passionate about gardening. I used to spend every hour of most weekends head down, bum up, in the garden at our place in Hahndorf in the Adelaide Hills. My particular joy was to visit what I call the TLC (requires Tender Love & Care) shelf at most of the nurseries near me. I became the nursery shopper equivalent of an ‘op shopper’ or secondhand store bargain hunter. I have been known to visit some nursery ‘TLC’ shelves 2 or 3 times in one day, just in case something rare and brilliant and half-dead that I could rescue, might have landed in the hour since I last checked. At the time, we had a half-acre garden to fill (the backyard was pretty much just weeds and old fruit trees) and we didn’t have a lot of money…

Anyway, then I had kids, and my time for gardening (including cheap-gardening and visiting nurseries) went out the window.

So! That’s not what I’m passionate about now, Kerrie!

My new passion, is cooking. (Now how is that for a lot of stuff that would get cut out, if this was a book?)

Hehe, it depends if that backstory is relevant πŸ™‚Β How long have you been involved in your passion for cooking?

It had a hiatus. (Did I mention children and writing?) But since we moved into our new house and I have a lovely new kitchen to cook in, I’ve had a resurgence. That’s about 3 months now.Β 

What is it about it that brings a sparkle to your eye?

I love food. I love wine. I really enjoy hosting people – I always have. Not just in my new kitchen. I feel like when I was a kid, being invited to people’s places for dinner happened all the time, but now it seems to be somewhat of an old-fashioned past-time. Now people seem more inclined to go to a restaurant for a shared meal. I love the whole preparation of doing a ‘dinner party’. I like thinking about what to eat and going through my recipe books. I like shopping for, and buying the stuff. I like to see how much I can get together from my own garden (the gardener is still alive and kicking inside me) and thinking about how much I can get done in advance so that on the evening in question, I get to enjoy myself with a glass of wine and relax almost as much as the next person. I even like thinking about what music we might listen to, while I cook, and while we all eat. When I think back (as your interview is making me do) hosting dinner parties is something I’ve enjoyed for a very long time… see the next question!

You sound like a wonderful host! Do you have a funny story about something that’s happened to you while involved in your passion for cooking and dinner party hosting?

Why yes, Kerrie, I do! Many moons ago, in fact, possibly the first dinner party I officially tried to host at the tender age of perhaps, say, 24. I decided I’d cook whole trout. Yes. Never cooked trout before and I was really a very fledgling dinner party host at this point. It wasn’t even in my own house. I had to borrow a girlfriend’s house to host my party. Invited were myself, a friend Deb (owner of the house), her partner Preston, and my partner, Mark. We were all having a wonderful time, and then I decided to cook these trout. Well, all their heads fell off. I had to dish everyone headless whole trout, with green beans.

And more recently – have you heard the story of the White Chocolate Tart, delicious (if misshapen dessert) of #WeekendAtLilys

Ha, yes, I have heard that story – it looked delicious though!Β Can you share a photo of you indulging in your passion?

Err… that would be a no. Unless you can rustle something up from your mate and mine, Juanita Kees. Juanita and Jennie Jones were my last dinner party guests, during our wonderful #WeekendAtLilys

hbobAnd had a wonderful time by all accounts πŸ™‚ Finally, please tell us a little about yourself.Β 

Oh, well, shucks. I think most people who might visit your blog will know a little bit about me. I have a novel with Escape Publishing called His Brand Of Beautiful; and I have two self-published stories, Fairway To Heaven (the most recent) about dodgy fannies and golf; and The Goodbye Ride, a novella about Ducatti motorbikes and vineyards.

I’m a member of the wonderful www.naughtyninjas.net.au – where I’m Lily ‘Beanie Queen’ Malone; and I’m also part of HeartsnWined, our Western Australian-based writing and reading group for people who love West Australian authors and their stories.

Thanks so much for having me come and share my passions (old and new) with you!

Thanks for being my guest today, Lily!

You can find more of Lily at http://lilymalone.wordpress.com/Β (and read all about #WeekendatLilys).Β You can also find her hanging around on Goodreads, and on Facebook, and on Twitter: @lily_lilymalone