Friday, January 03, 2014

Guest Post: Wendy Wax (Plus Giveaway!!!) CLOSED

***Congratulations to Petite, Susan @ Reading World & Kaley @ Books Etc, winners of the giveaway!!! Thanks to all who entered! 

I don't know about you, but I have been counting the days until the return of Downton Abbey here in the States with the premiere of Season 4...and that countdown is slowly dwindling down to a mere few days! 

To help pass the time, I picked up Wendy Wax's While We Were Watching Downton Abbey, which was my First Book of 2014. My review of the book will be up tomorrow but in the meantime, I have a charming guest post by the lovely Wendy Wax to share with you, along with a giveaway (3 copies!!!) of her book, which is now available in mass market paperback.


If I lived at Downton Abbey I’d be thinner!
Wendy Wax 

As any writer who’s ever attempted to compose more than a grocery list will tell you, writing is a lonely and largely sedentary pursuit. Unless you can come up with a good enough excuse to evacuate your desk chair – something along the lines of a rapidly approaching natural disaster – you are expected to remain seated for long periods of time. The only movement is by your eyes, your fingers, and if you’re lucky and it’s a good day, your brain.

Writing is a fattening occupation. In fact, there probably should be some sort of warning label from the surgeon general that writing can cause weight gain.

Writing, all too often, feels like brain surgery. Without anesthesia. As a result writers are among the most determined and experienced procrastinators I know. Some writers invest a lot of imagination into not writing (we do, after all, make things up for a living) but a lot of us turn to food. And I’m not talking about preparing it!

My home is just slightly smaller than the 250 plus room Highclere Castle, which doubles as Downton Abbey.

Watching the popular PBS drama (which because I’ve written a novel titled WHILE WE WERE WATCHING DOWNTON ABBEY was research and NOT procrastinating) I realized right away that my kitchen (and the pantry and refrigerator inside it) is way too close to my office.

Shortly after I started following Downton Abbey I realized that if I were a member of the Crawley family, I would be a lot thinner.

First of all, I’ve never seen a scene where Lord Grantham and Lady Cora are standing in front of the fridge trying to decide what to snack on next. In fact, I’ve never seen them near the icebox at all. If I lived there, I wouldn’t be in the kitchen so much either. I mean, who’s going to take all those stairs down to the servants’ hall every time the writing’s not going well? Especially when Mrs. Patmore might slap your hands for helping yourself once you got there?

Plus it’s really crowded below stairs at Downton. Even if you managed to evade Mrs. Patmore and Daisy, you could run into O’Brien and Thomas down there in some corner scheming.  Or Anna and Bates stealing a kiss in a broom closet. Or Mrs. Hughes and Carson counting the silver or sharing a cup of tea.

And if you did pinch a stray leg of lamb or a leftover fruit tart and somehow smuggled it up all those stairs to your room how would you dispose of the evidence with all those servants picking up after and taking care of you?

It could actually make food not worth the effort.

So let’s say this forced you to hold off until mealtime. You still wouldn’t be able to secretly load up your plate with an extra serving of duck. Or bury your face in a mound of treacle pie when it’s being served by a footman and Carson, and your tuxedoed and gowned family and guests are watching.

If I were a member of the Crawley family, Mrs. Patmore would probably make me low cal healthy meals if I asked for them. (Isn’t this why watercress was invented?) And I could walk the 1000 acres of grounds to burn calories from dawn to dusk.

But it’s not just the procrastinatory eating I’m worried about. There’s a lot of stress and rejection in publishing. And I’ve never seen a single Crawley call the chauffeur to bring the car round so that he or she could go stuff his or her face at Mickey D’s.

I don’t know what served as ‘junk food’ in the Edwardian era. At Downton comfort and sympathy come in the form of tea. Just a pot of tea and some of those tea tiny little cucumber sandwiches.

Yep, if I were a Crawley of Downton Abbey, I would most definitely be thinner.  


About the author:  Award-winning author Wendy Wax's work, including While We Were Watching Downton Abbey, Ocean Beach and Ten Beach Road, has been highly praised. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution says she “writes with breezy wit and keen insight into family relations.” Her novels have been featured in national publications such as USA Today, Ladies’ Home Journal and Woman’s World, and on the prominent book sites On A Clear Day You Can Read Forever, Luxury Reading, Night Owl Reviews, Fresh Fiction and many others. In 2011 she was honored by the City of St. Pete Beach, Florida, where she was born and raised, when the City Commission declared May 12 “Wendy Wax Day.”
Her nine novels and one novella also include Ten Beach Road, Ocean Beach, Magnolia Wednesdays, and The Accidental Bestseller. Her work has been sold to publishers in fifteen countries and her novel, Hostile Makeover, was excerpted in Cosmopolitan magazine.

Wendy is currently at work on her next book, The House on Mermaid Point, on sale in July, 2014. It reintroduces the characters from Ten Beach Road (St. Pete Beach) and Ocean Beach (South Beach), and sets them loose in the Florida Keys. Her first e-original, Christmas at the Beach, a holiday novella that also reunites those protagonists has just been published.

When not writing, she spends her time visiting with readers and signing books at While We Were Watching Downton Abbey parties, continuing to avoid spoilers about Season 4, which has already aired in the U.K, speaking to writer’s groups and book clubs, enjoying time with her family, and devouring books. She has lived in Atlanta for sixteen years.

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GIVEAWAY DETAILS - CLOSED (US/Canada)   Thanks to the publicist I have three copies of While We Were Watching Downton Abbey to give away to my readers.  

To enter…
  • For 1 entry leave me a comment entering the giveaway.
  • Tweet, share on Facebook, or blog for 2 extra entries.
  • Please include email address so I can contact you if you win.
This giveaway is open to US/Canada residents only and ends January 10th. 

Good luck!



  1. I would enjoy reading this unique and lovely novel which interests me. Thanks for this giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  2. Loved this post. I am an avid fan of Downton Abbey and will watch this season starting Sunday. What a great giveaway. Many thanks. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

  3. I'd love to read this one. It sounds wonderful. Thanks for the giveaway!


  4. I really enjoy Wendy Wax's books and would love to read this one too!

  5. I'd love to read this. We were just in England on vacation, but Highclere Castle was closed and we were so disappointed we couldn't tour it! Thanks for the chance to win.
    s.asher135 (at) gmail (dot) com

  6. Oh my gosh, I LOVED this post! It's so true, I think. Not only would we be thinner if we lived at Downton, we'd be eating healthier food, too. Just think about it! No weird processed food! Thanks for sharing this post and the giveaway. Off to share on Twitter (@KaleyS23).
    books.etc.blogger AT gmail DOT com

  7. I have this one only wish list!

    lag110 at

  8. Facebook:

  9. I would love to win. Thank you for the chance.

  10. retweeted - - hminnesota


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