Anna Daniels has enjoyed great success as a comedic storyteller since kicking off her career by winning the ABC’s ‘Comedy Segment of the Year Award’ for an interview with Russell Crowe. She then went on to co-create the ABC’s first online sketch comedy series Tough at the Top with Melbourne comedian, Anne Edmonds.
For several years Anna wrote and presented funny upbeat stories for The Project, winning over viewers with her warm, silly, endearing style. She has also written, presented and/or produced radio, TV and online content for Queensland Weekender, Red Symons’ Breakfast Show, and the BBC One series, John Bishop’s Australia. Anna can now be heard presenting statewide programs on 612 ABC Brisbane.
Girl in Between is Anna’s debut novel. She now answers the Booktopia Book Guru’s Ten Terrifying Questions.
1. To begin with why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself – where were you born? Raised? Schooled?
I was born, raised and schooled in Rockhampton, the Beef Capital of Australia! Rocky’s on the Tropic of Capricorn in Central Qld, and home to about 70,000 people and 3 million head of cows.
2. What did you want to be when you were twelve, eighteen and thirty? And why?
When I was twelve, I was very interested in operating a showbag stand at the local show! I was so obsessed with showbags I used to videotape the ads when they came on TV. At eighteen I flirted with the idea of becoming a physiotherapist or a doctor. My family are all in the health field and I was sporty so I suppose that influenced me. When I hit thirty, though, I well and truly knew that I’d like to be a writer. Writing has always been my greatest love.
3. What strongly held belief did you have at eighteen that you do not have now?
That double denim works.
4. What were three big events – in the family circle or on the world stage or in your reading life, for example – you can now say, had a great effect on you and influenced you in your career path?
Anne of Green Gables was my favourite book from childhood. I absolutely adored the character of Anne and her drifting daydreams, and later quest to become a writer. Also from childhood, the movies Muriel’s Wedding and Four Weddings and a Funeral really struck a chord with me because they’re funny but also a bit sad in parts; I love humour that pulls on your heartstrings.
5. Considering the innumerable electronic media avenues open to you – blogs, online newspapers, TV, radio, etc. – why have you chosen to write a book?
I have followed many different artistic pathways over my career, but in the end, they all come down to the written word, and I’ve always known the greatest achievement and challenge for me would be to write a book.
6. Please tell us about your latest book…
Girl In Between is a romantic-comedy about life at the crossroads. It follows the quest of 32-year-old Lucy Crighton, and her best friend Rosie, as they attempt to sort out what they really want in life! It’s very Aussie and very fun, and features an hilarious cast of characters.
7. If your work could change one thing in this world – what would it be?
I hope people take away that you don’t have to be in a big city to have a big life! And that sometimes, to move forward, all you have to do is get out of your own way.
8. Whom do you most admire and why?
I recently discovered Brother of the More Famous Jack by Barbara Trapido and I thought her novel was just magnificent. Every line seems to zing with energy and the dialogue is fantastic. I definitely admire Barbara’s writing style.
9. Many people set themselves very ambitious goals. What are yours?
I would love for Girl In Between to be adapted into a screenplay, and to be made into a comic, Aussie TV series.
10. What advice do you give aspiring writers?
My advice for aspiring writers would be to find a narrative voice which feels authentic for you; enter writing competitions, because you never know your luck, and don’t worry too much about grammatical errors or punctuation mistakes in your manuscript, because if you’ve got a compelling, distinctive narrative voice, a publisher will overlook any surface errors.
Good luck! I hope you enjoy Girl In Between!
Thanks for playing, Anna!
Girl in Between
Life can be tricky when you're a girl in between relationships, careers and cities ... and sometimes you have to face some uncomfortable truths. The sparkling debut from comic TV and radio presenter, Anna Daniels.
Lucy Crighton has just moved in with some gregarious housemates called Brian and Denise . . . who are her parents. She's also the proud mother of Glenda, her beloved 10-year-old . . . kelpie. And she has absolutely no interest in the dashing son of her parents' new next-door neighbour . . . well, maybe just a little.
When you're the girl in between relationships, careers and cities, you sometimes have to face some...