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Here's what Volunteer Juanita McLellan is up to during lockdown

1. How are you spending your time during lock-down?

Mostly so far it has been cooking, baking, eating and cleaning the kitchen. We moved in a rush just before lockdown, so it has been a bit manic to say the least. In the middle bits, I have been making videos, walking the dogs, and remembering what it was like to be in my kayak....

2. Have you read any good books lately?

It's been a bit tough to get into anything too deep and meaningful in the last wee bit, but I have been able to read a bit of "All's Well That Ends Well" and re-reading the Alex series from my youth. I have a copy of Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett's "Good Omens" and Ray Bradbury's "The Martian Chronicles" which I have been waiting for a quiet time to read.

3. Have you listened to any good podcasts or music?

This is the season for Spotify - I have been enjoying the various playlists created. I have also been following "Drinking by my shelf" on YouTube, which is just delightful.

4. If you could have your own Mad Hatters tea party, catered for by the Featherston Booktown Country Tea and Cakes volunteers, which writers would you invite and what would you most like to eat?

To eat is simple... I would like a re-creation of the Hot-Pot that I had in northern China. And as for invites... If I could have anyone living or dead.... my dead list would be Terry Pratchett, the Bronte's, Shakespeare and Jean Rhys. Alive... I'll take Tessa Duder (because I was excited about seeing her this Booktown), Neil Gaiman, Rick Riordan and JK Rowling so that we can have a fantastic time discussion YA lit and creating imaginary worlds, and Nigella Lawson because I just love her and I am sure she will arrive with something smooth and chocolatey.

5. Do you have a favourite author or genre at the moment?

That's a tough question - I have always been a fan of dystopian sci fi - but less so in the present climate... it seems too close to home. So I'm leaning heavily into entertaining cookbooks. It's always relaxing to curl up with a little of Nigella talking about food.

6. In a perfect world who would you most like to hear speak at the next Featherston Booktown?

I'm voting Neil Gaiman - because I know he is stuck here in NZ for the lockdown and Tessa Duder, because come hell or high water, I'll get to tell her how much I have loved her books.

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