If it’s Friday, it must be France …
Last Friday we spent some time in beautiful Aix-En-Provence. Today I want to introduce you to a young writer and reviewer living there. I’ve been following her blog, Word By Word, for a while now and I’m sure you are going to want to add it to your list too!
Claire McAlpine writes book reviews that are a pleasure to read as much for her own literary style as for the book. She has a fine way with words … truly magnifique!
In her own words – About Me. I am originally from New Zealand, leaving when I was 26 to travel the world, basing myself in London, England. I met my husband in Aix en Provence on my way from London to a small fishing village in Italy (where my first novel is set) and when my daughter was born we went to NZ for a few years before deciding to live in France.
Despite a career in Marketing, I’ve always had other passions and desired a lifestyle that could include them. I studied Aromatherapy and Traditional Chinese Medicine in London which I now practice as well as teaching english as a second language to adults. I also write a monthly travel guide on the city of Marseille. I love to write fiction and continue practicing and I adore reading.
Word by Word (http://clairemca.wordpress.com) is part of my journey and where currently my reading and writing meet not just each other but that wonderful community of others like us out there.
A couple of weeks ago I mentioned the French government was removing the term “mademoiselle” from all of the official forms and documents. Around the same time, Claire wrote a super-interesting post about the French language. Click here to read what she had to say.
*Drum roll and fireworks* Claire recently received The Versatile Blogger Award and posted these seven random facts about herself:
- I am an Aquarian.
- The 1600-acre hill country sheep farm where I spent my childhood was one of the Middle Earth locations in the film ‘Lord of the Rings’.
- I once worked on the 104 foot (30m) tall ship ‘The Golden Plover”. I was employed as a hydro ceramic engineer (dishwasher), except when the Captain or 1stmate shouted “all hands on deck”.
- I have visited more than 30 countries.
- I was a bridesmaid at a traditional African wedding in Lagos, Nigeria.
- I am married to a man who was born in a manger refugee camp in Bethlehem whose name starts with J.
- I like to read Buddhist philosophy.
Interesting lady, Patricia. I think that people in countries outside the US travel more than Americans do, as a whole. I also think it’s fascinating to know someone who has lived in several culturally different places. I’ll go check her out. Thanks!
Claire’s a treat, Marcia. You might even want to have her on your blog sometime to talk about aromatherapy and how it fits in with being sexy and smart!
What a great idea, Patricia! I may just do that! thanks!
Interesting… and 30 countries! I haven’t even been in 30 states… okay, I put a foot in Mexico and have been to Canada a million times, but… 30. Wow.
And yes, Claire does wonderful reviews!
Thanks for stopping by, Nelle. “Canada a million times”? Yay! Where do you usually go?
Wonderful collaboration, Patricia and Claire! I already had a good impression of Claire from our previous blogging encounters, but I left this post convinced that I need to spend a lot more time keeping up with Word by Word – her list of 7 things is amazing! Thanks for this.
Thanks, Tele. I daresay your list of 7 things would be quite amazing too!
Bridgette Booth says
Thanks Patricia for introducing such an interesting person. You just know the neatest folks. 🙂
Yes I do, Bridgette and you are one of them!
Juliet Greenwood says
Fascinating! What a life journey, and that’s only so far, for one amazing blogger who speaks from the heart.
It’s good to meet an inspiration!
Totally agree! Claire does speak from the heart in so many ways and her reviews are among the best I have read. Thanks for dropping by Juliet. I’m also a gardener and look forward to reading Eden’s Garden.
Claire 'Word by Word' says
Thank you so much Patricia for spreading the word and sharing a little of my story, something I don’t mention too much on my blog, so it’s a special occasion to reveal a little more than usual – it is not unusual however for someone from NZ to have travelled to many countries, it’s almost expected and is part of our culture, coming from an island in the Pacific so far away we are expected to learn something of the world – by seeing it – and employers also like and encourage young people to have “overseas experience”.
I love to travel in the imagination, both writing and reading and so all those places and bundles of memories are within me ready to be reimagined into stories 🙂
I look forward to more of your stories too Patricia, both those from your fingertips and those you share with us, it’s so true, everyone has a story to tell and we all have things to learn from them. Thank you for inviting me into your world, it is indeed a wonderful community.
It was my pleasure to have you visit my blog, Claire and I know we will have many opportunities to share more of our stories. Thank you for allowing us to have a peek into your world. The community is all the more wonderful with friends like you.
August McLaughlin says
Such fun to learn tid bits from other people’s lives. Thanks for introducing us to Claire, Patricia! Off to enjoy her blog… 🙂