Hello Charlie and welcome back! I know since we last spoke, your beautiful little boy has started full time school – the first major milestone! Your house must seem very quiet during term times!
Hi Julia it is an absolute pleasure to be back, thank you so much for having me.
Yes since Cole started school full-time the house has become more of an office than the fun playground it was and I particularly miss him at lunchtime as that was always our special time. Since he started school full-time I’ve found that I get so stuck into my writing I lose track of time and sometimes lunch is very late, a very bad habit I must nip in the bud!
You’ll have to set an alarm clock for lunch!
Your "True Diaries" are packed with great advice for brides to be, mums to be, and new mums – do you have any advice to give to parents up and down the country on coping with their child's first day of full time education?
Oh my goodness that is such a difficult one, I thought I was going to be OK with Cole going to school and my biggest worry was that he may not like it. His happiness is so important to me and I knew if he cried I couldn’t just leave him. Fortunately his school is attached to his nursery so he already had his best friend with him and when the tambourine was shaken he ran to sit down with hardly a backward glance for his mummy and daddy. I clearly remember coming home and trying to do some housework but the house felt so empty. I tweeted the news that my little boy had started school and had so many lovely tweets of support I was soon a blubbering wreck! My mum telephoned and the best bit of advice she gave me was that instead of looking at it as the end of an era, to celebrate the fact that he was progressing and starting on new adventures.
Good advice indeed, and proof, if any were needed that mum still knows best, and grand-mums know best of all!
I know that since we last chatted, you've done a marvellous job in gathering together one hundred little words from child care givers (parents, grandparents, etc) and compiling them all into one fantastic book called appropriately enough "100 Little Words on Parenthood". It's a fantastic concept, how did the idea occur?
I have good old twitter to thank for the idea as I had just started using it and was struggling to condense my words to the 140 characters. I was also working on another parenting book and pondered on whether it would be possible to write about all aspects of parenthood in just 100 words and there my idea was born.
Twitter has a lot to answer for! Would you have done anything differently?
I really don’t think so, no. I am a very organic, go with the flow type of person and this is reflected in my writing. I didn’t actively seek particular people to help me I just put it out there (ahem twitter again!) and was overwhelmed by the amazing and extremely talented people who offered to help me. As well as being the greatest group of parents many of them are well known bloggers, authors and experts. I got very lucky and am still pinching myself at their generous and supportive spirits.
"100 Little Words on Parenthood" has received some amazing reviews, can you share one of your favourites?
I have been overwhelmed by the lovely reviews so it is hard to choose, but this one encapsulates what many have said and makes me feel that I succeeded in compiling a book that truly does make parents feel good about this amazing journey we are all on.
‘When I was pregnant I read everything I could about pregnancy and parenting. Most books went into great detail. But 100 Little Words on Parenthood gives you all the best bits cut down into 100 word snippets. It makes you laugh, it makes you cry, but most of all as a parent it makes you realise you’re not alone!’
Wonderful praise and very well deserved! Your radio show on Coastway Hospital Radio has become a "must listen to" in our house – how did you break into show biz?
Unintentionally I promise you although I do come from a theatrical background. I trained as a ballerina, danced in a Mexican circus and worked in the film and TV industry for many years. But the radio show was a fortuitous circumstance I have my lovely hubby Dave to thank for. I made him a little late for his job one day as I was being interviewed for BBC Radio. It turned out that the chap he was working for had connections to Coastway Hospital Radio and suggested I pop in for a chat. I’ve now been hosting my own show “Charlie’s World” every Saturday night for the last couple of years and love it.
You certainly have a natural talent for communication with people – and working in a Mexican circus sounds intriguing – perhaps you can tell us more next time you drop by!
Finally, what's next in the pipeline? Can you share any upcoming projects with us?
Well, I do need to finish “The Toddler Files”, the book I put aside to complete “100 Little Words on Parenthood”. I have a partially written theatrical memoir that I would love to complete as it is a part of my life I haven’t shared yet with my readers, it’s all been weddings and babies and there is a whole different side to me ‘jazz hands’ and all, that I would like to share. Answering this question it’s occurred to me that I have a lot of unfinished books! I have another work in progress a non-fiction book about smell and finally this year may be the year I try out writing some fiction for the first time. I have two ideas that won’t go away so I’m guessing there are going to be a lot of late nights ahead.
Exciting times ahead for Charlie and her fans! Be certain to keep up with Charlie, full details of her Mega Blog Book Hop, are available on Charlie’s own site now!
About Charlie in her own words:
I am happy-go-lucky, sensitive and passionate about the special people in my life – namely my husband, little boy, family and friends.
My love of writing started as soon as I was old enough to wield a biro and for much of my life I have kept a diary. I am extremely sentimental and when considering what my first book should be about it was a natural decision for me to choose the special milestone moments in my life. Getting married – The True Diary of a Bride-to-be. My pregnancy journey - The True Diary of a Mum-to-be and becoming a mum at last – The True Diary of Baby’s First Year. My latest book is "100 Little Words on Parenthood". Becoming a mum has been my greatest and most fulfilling achievement and one that continues to bring me joy each day.
Charlie has added some wonderful prizes - free entry via Rafflecopter - so be sure to follow Charlie's Mega Book Blog Hop and enter every day to increase your chances of winning!