Today I’m delighted to welcome Jamie Baywood to Me, My Books and I:
Jamie Baywood grew up in Petaluma, California. In 2010, she made the most impulsive decision of her life by moving to New Zealand. Getting Rooted in New Zealand is her first book about her experiences living there. Jamie is now married and living happily ever after in the United Kingdom. She is working on her second book.
To find out more:
Where did the idea for Getting Rooted in New Zealand come from?
Most of the book was written as the events happened; it just took me a few years to work up the nerve to publish. I started writing my book because I had funny experiences that I had trouble believing were true. I wrote the stories down to stay sane. I shared the stories with friends. The stories made people laugh so I decided to organize the stories into a book and publish in the hopes of make others laugh too.
Who designed the cover and why did you go for that particular design?
I designed my book cover. The final book cover design was selected by having a vote for the favorite book design on my Facebook. For the cover design, my husband took photos of me with a suitcase. I drew a picture of myself based on the photograph with the suitcase and incorporated it into the book cover design. The background of the book cover is a portion of a watercolor painting I produced while in New Zealand. The watercolor painting was part of a series of paintings of the New Zealand coastlines. On the cover you can also see the Auckland Skytower and New Zealand native birds like the Kiwi and the Fantail.
If Getting Rooted in New Zealand was made into a movie who would you like to play the lead roles?
Maybe Alexis Bledel or Zooey Deschanel. Whichever one is most sarcastic.
What do you hope readers will learn from it?
Living abroad has always been a dream of mine. I hope readers are encouraged to take their own leaps of faith.
What makes Getting Rooted in New Zealand stand out from the crowd?
My book is a true story. My life has been so strange it sounds like fiction, but it is really too weird to make up. My truth is better than fiction.
Why did you start writing?
I didn’t write before I lived in New Zealand. I had good, bad and weird experiences in New Zealand that I wrote down as they happened. I will always be grateful for New Zealand for turning me into a writer.
What is the hardest part of writing a book?
I have received negative reviews for Getting Rooted in New Zealand stating the book doesn’t represent New Zealand. My book is in no way, shape, or form a travel guide to New Zealand. I lived in New Zealand for over a year; it is about relocating and uprooting one’s life more than traveling or a specific location.
What is the easiest part of writing a book?
I always seem to attract weirdos and find myself in bizarre situations. My books write themselves. I just write down my experiences and observations.
Paperback or eBook?
Pen or pencil?
Breakfast, lunch or dinner?
Telephone or face-to-face?
Hot or cold?
Any last words for your readers?
I hope Getting Rooted in New Zealand makes you laugh! There have been situations in my life where I have had two choices: laugh or cry. I have chosen to laugh. I hope you can laugh with me.
Thank you so much for being here today Jamie, it was a pleasure to have you on my blog. I particularly enjoyed reading about your cover design!
Now check out the book:
“Craving change and lacking logic, at 26, Jamie, a cute and quirky Californian, impulsively moves to New Zealand to avoid dating after reading that the country’s population has 100,000 fewer men. In her journal, she captures a hysterically honest look at herself, her past and her new wonderfully weird world filled with curious characters and slapstick situations in unbelievably bizarre jobs. It takes a zany jaunt to the end of the Earth and a serendipitous meeting with a fellow traveler before Jamie learns what it really means to get rooted.”