Welcome to another guest post from another author! This post is very interesting, and an insight into A L Michael's life. I'll let her take it away!
Sometimes, Happy Ever After is where the real trouble begins…
Chelsea Donnolly wasn’t supposed to amount to anything. But if there’s one thing the bad girl from the estate liked better than trouble, it was a challenge. So, to the amusement of her best friends Evie, Mollie and Ruby – and the disbelief of her teachers – this bad girl turned good.
These days, Chelsea is the kind of girl people are proud to know – and, after a surprise trip to Venice, she has a ring on her finger to prove it. But to get there, she’s had to learn to keep her deepest secrets from everyone – even her fiancé. And when wedding preparations threaten to blow her cover, Chelsea can’t help but wonder: in her battle to the top, might she have left the best parts of herself behind?
I, like many writing cliches, love Italy. I travelled around some of it when I was 18 with two dear friends, in search of summer love and la dolce vita. Some of the fondest memories I have from that trip are in Desenzano at the bottom of Lake Garda, waking up to the water each morning and staring out to it each evening, drunk on red wine and wondering at how amazing my life would be. Last year I went back, with my mum and I did much the same thing I did at 18 - drank too much wine, ate too much pasta, and wrote. And this time, when I looked out onto the lake, I didn’t have to imagine my wonderful life, instead I just revelled in it. And I saw it through my character’s eyes.
Nice Day for a White Wedding is set in Malcesine, further up the lake from Desenzano. I spent a day there, walking cobbled streets and going up in the cable car, wondering what it would be like to snowboard down those mountains. And I thought about Chelsea, my lovely character who deserves all the good things if she’ll just let herself have them. I looked for abundance and richness, for something beyond classical Italy. I had been obsessed by a movie called Stealing Beauty, where youth, beauty and art come to life in Italy. But that is not Chelsea’s story. Hers is a story where la dolce vita has been corrupted by richness, money and privilege. When all she wants is to walk barefoot on the sand, but she is given expensive wine and speedboat afternoons. She wants simple, but that’s not the life she’s chosen.
Chelsea doesn’t want to stay in a grand villa with a private boat. She wants to walk the streets, taste the ice cream, marvel at those huge slices of pizza and talk to the waiter at the local bar who sees everybody passing by.
Chelsea wants the real Italy, and that’s what I sought to capture.
About the author:
A.L. Michael is hurtling towards the end of her twenties a little too quickly. She is the author of 'Wine Dark, Sea Blue', 'The Last Word', 'My So Called (Love) Life', 'Driving Home for Christmas', and 'If You Don't Know Me By Now', based upon her experiences as a London barista.
Her new three book series, The House on Camden Square, starts with 'Goodbye Ruby Tuesday' and focuses on three friends as they try to open an arts centre in Camden, in memory of their rock star friend.
She is a Creative Therapeutic Facilitator, currently researching the power of creative writing to be helpful in recovering from eating disorders, and likes running writing workshops that link together the body and the mind. When she's not writing, she likes yoga, trying to bake healthy treats and was a hipster before hipsters were hipster. Well, she likes Chai lattes and owns a Mac.