I was recently asked to to participate in a short interview for Christmas with blogger Bookworm 1977 aka Susie Ballinger. It was published today on her blog at Book Reviews and Much More and here are my answers to Susie's 5 Christmas questions:
Christmas Question Time
On the 1st of December, we will bring you the last edition for this year of question time with the authors.
Here are the questions we asked the authors.
Do you consider yourself a Christmas Grinch or do you see yourself as Mr. or Mrs. Claus?
Would the people know you best disagree or agree with your answer?
What do you like best about Christmas?
What books are you hoping to find in your Christmas stocking this year?
What is your favorite Christmas song or Christmas Carol and why?
What was the best Christmas present you ever received as a child?
Which Christmas character from literature would you like to have as a house guest this Christmas and why?
Thank you to all authors who have taken part in question time and may I wish you all a wonderful Christmas and a prosperous New Year.
Brian L Porter
Answers to your questions.
1. I'm definitely Mr. Claus where my wife Juliet is concerned. I love to buy her something really special for Christmas and also like to place lots of little presents under the tree as Christmas day surprises. I was brought up to see Christmas as a time for giving, not receiving, so I do tend to be a Grinch when it comes to certain people who seem to think Christmas is all about what they want for themselves and don't think about others. This sadly includes certain younger members of my own family who don't seem to realise what the original Christmas story was about. The three wise men came bearing gifts, not expecting to receive anything in return. Those who know me will expect nothing less than the answer I just gave you.
2. I love the feeling of peace and quiet that seems to hang in the air on Christmas morning, when the shops are all closed, the streets are quiet and for a short time at least, the world seems to be at peace.
3. Rather than one particular book I would love to receive an Amazon gift card or even five or ten pounds in an envelope so that I can trawl through the books on sale at Amazon. It's amazing how many cheap good reads you can find on the Amazon website. So even five pounds could get me five 99p thrillers to read on the dark winter nights.
4. My favourite Christmas song is the carol, Silent Night. Not only does it sum up the meaning of Christmas for me, but as an ex-servicemen, it reminds me of the Christmas truce that took place in the trenches during the first World War when the fighting stopped for a short time and the British and German troops exchanged gifts and played football together before the truce ended and they returned to the madness of the war. Apparently the truce was triggered by the German troops being heard singing Silent Night, (originally written in German), and the British joined in the singing and one thing led to another, until their officers met in no-mans land and the unofficial truce began.
5. My favourite Christmas present as a child was undoubtedly the railway layout I received when I was ten years old. It was amazing, with various tracks, stations, landscapes etc and two fantastic new electric trains, one passenger and one freight train. It gave me hours and hours of pleasure for years to come until the time came when I left home to join the Royal Air Force. I carried on adding items to it over the years from my pocket money until it had more trains, trees, tunnels, level crossings and a road system with cars and buses etc. My Mum and Dad didn't have much money back then, and as young as I was I realised they must have saved up all year to buy me that most fantastic and treasured present.
6. I'd love to have poor Nancy, from Oliver Twist as my guest for Christmas dinner. Though she had nothing and was a downtrodden and extremely poor person from the lowest echelon of society, controlled and beaten by the evil Bill Sikes, and undoubtedly sent out to sell herself on the streets of Victorian London, Nancy had a big heart and came to love and care for Oliver, ding her best to protect him from Sikes's violence. I would love to be able to give her one day of enjoyment, and good food and company, away from the degradation of her life with Sikes and Fagin.