Welcome Judith Works, who brings a special Italian flavor to the World of Joy anthology.
JK: What is your story about? Is it inspired by your personal experiences with the holidays?
JW: I wrote this little story about Christmas in Rome because at this time of the year my thoughts always return to Italy, where I lived for ten years. My husband and I moved to Rome when I had a job with the United Nations and he took a very early retirement from his own job to become our chef, home manager, driver and tour guide for us and for our daughter and friends who visited regularly.
The story tells how different the holiday celebration is compared to here: much lower key, more emphasis on the Christmas story, and with its own traditional foods. Because of the happy memories from those years, we now keep some of the Italian traditions like eating panettone, and enjoying a Nativity set made in Italy. In the story, I write about the crystal drops we purchased at a flea market to hang on our Christmas tree. The drops, taken from old chandeliers, always make me think of who might have danced under the glittering lights in the 1800s —a sentimental touch for our home now so far from Italy.
JK: Do you ever get to go back to Italy?
JW: We return to Italy nearly every year to see friends and to enjoy life. This year we spent two weeks in September in Milan and Rome, and for a special treat, we are returning for Thanksgiving. Italians do not celebrate this holiday, but there are special events to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the UN World Food Program which we will attend.
JK: What else have you written and published?
JW: I am the author of a memoir, Coins in the Fountain, which depicts the joys and travails of expat life in Italy. It is available as an ebook. I also blog at http://aLittleLightExercise.
blogspot.com about my travel adventures. I write travel articles for two on-line magazines, Travel Belles and Plum Deluxe. My forthcoming novel, set in Rome, is in the final stages as my editor is just finishing up reviewing the last two chapters.
JK: Thank you so much for adding an international flair to the anthology.
A World of Joy is available for free download now.