Anna Buckley's Blog

The pictures and stories behind the books.

Category: People

May Giveaway!

booksBecoming an author is a wonderful experience, having the freedom to let my imagination run wild, to tell stories. I love that strange sensation when the line blurs between reality and fiction, when characters start to develop a life of their own.
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Looking for Pho and finding so much more…

IMG_20151128_175948I’d been craving a bowl of that delicious, aromatic Vietnamese soup Pho. My favourite restaurant to satisfy this need is Than Phong on Victoria street Richmond and only a pleasant 30 minute walk away. Victoria Street is often called ‘Little Saigon’ because of its wonderful array of Vietnamese shops, supermarkets and restaurants and is one of Melbourne’s great Eat Streets.

My husband and I agreed that on this fine Sunday a walk would be good, we could stock up the pantry and finish up with a soup for lunch. Read the rest of this entry »

Pull-Apart Dinner Rolls and Poppy Seed Crackers.

IMG_9922[1]These rolls and crackers use the same dough base but produce two very different yummy treats…both are ridiculously easy.

I was motivated to make them because I’d learnt how to harvest poppy seeds over the weekend. Read the rest of this entry »

Giorgio Locatelli you would love this Porchetta!

IMG_9434[1]I’d been back from America for just over two weeks and couldn’t settle down. I’d procrastinated by cleaning the house from top to bottom, replanted the veggie patch and cooked way too much food.

My husband suggested we go away for the weekend and I jumped at the chance…any excuse to avoid stepping back into the reality of everyday life and more truthfully… any excuse to avoid doing the rewrite that my new book was needing! Read the rest of this entry »

Oysters, a fish called Spot and a foodie trip with Lorraine Eaton on the Eastern Shore

IMG_9273[1] Jane got a call from her friend Lorraine who wondered if we’d like to do a trip north to Virginia’s Eastern Shore. The oyster season had begun and I was more than interested. You see Lorraine Eaton is the food writer for The states main newspaper, The Virginian Pilot, and has an encyclopedic knowledge of the culinary secrets of this glorious part of the world.

It took a millisecond to say “Yes!” Read the rest of this entry »

Smithfield and DeeDee Dardens Country Hams.

IMG_8940[1]I’d visited Smithfield, Virginia, 5 years ago, by chance really, we were lost. We found a gorgeous old town filled with decorative Victorian houses, old shops (some empty) and incredibly friendly people. An old guy, with a HAM sticker on the rear window of his pick-up truck, pulled over and asked if he could help. We said we were lost…on our way to historic Charlottesville.

“Why would you want to go there? Smithfield is so much prettier and if you want to buy some good food we are the home of HAM.”

So we picked up some country ham, drove around the streets and snapped pics of pretty houses. But it was only a fleeting visit and I was left wanting to know more. Read the rest of this entry »

Soulful Sunday at the Gospel Church.

12043151_10206348706455222_3556855261880921194_nWe’d been talking to Janes friend Tracy, asking what he was doing this Sunday, did he want to catch up? He said he was attending gospel church with his mother. Tracy described a small country parish that had seen generations of people attending  church, celebrating their faith with fellowship, music and… song.

Could this be one of those churches I’d read about where the congregation bursts into song, sounding like Aretha Franklin, swaying rhythmically, responding viscerally to the music and messages of their faith? I was curious…

How do you let someone know you’d like to witness this without turning their deep spirituality into entertainment, a spectacle? But it wasn’t so complicated…Tracy simply invited us to come along. Read the rest of this entry »

The Disappearing Tangier Island.

IMG_8766[1] Tangier is a small sand island in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay, Virginia, on the east coast of America. My next book is set on a fictitious version of Tangier and researching it was the real reason for my trip to the States.

I’d read about Tangier in 2007. Bill Bryson mentioned in his book, The Mother Tongue,  the archaic Elizabethan dialect spoken by the inhabitants of the isolated Island. I’ve remained curious about how such a quaint anomaly can exist in a connected, modern world.

Tangier Island is famous for its soft shell crabs, oysters and striped bass. The fishermen who ply their trade there are called Watermen.

And sadly it’s also famous for being the island that is slowly disappearing into the sea. I felt a compulsion to see it before it was too late! Read the rest of this entry »

Lunch at Sag Harbor…Hot Dogs at Home.

IMG_8596[1] The plan was to explore the South Fork of Long Island, the true Hampton’s. A place where the super rich of New York have their holiday homes, spend long summers and big dollars. It’s a place of pretty little towns, South, East and West Hampton and grand estates. Jay Gatsby lived in the South Fork…

Sag Harbor, on the other side of the bay from Shelter Island would be our destination. Jane knew of an interesting restaurant there and thought it would be a good place to stop for lunch. Read the rest of this entry »

Classic Hampton’s Style

IMG_8551[1] Jane’s friend Jim had called and invited us over to dinner. Till now I’d been a tourist and was looking forward to hanging out with a local. Read the rest of this entry »