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Interview with Vanessa de Largie, author of Don’t Hit Me!



Vanessa de LargieVanessa de Largie is a multi-award-winning actress and author based in Australia. She was introduced into the world of make-believe when she was 3.  Her mother was a film buff, who made her watch films from the 50’s era. Her father, an avid reader and vinyl collector gave her a love of books and music. Combined, her parents influence allowed her to know early on, what she wanted to do with her life. At 22, Vanessa left her hometown of Perth for Melbourne and within a month, she had a lead role in a play at Melbourne’s La Mama Theatre. Over the next decade, she would begin to hone her craft.

In 2006, Vanessa was cast in the lead role of Nocturne, Night of The Vampire, directed by prolific Melbourne film maker Bill Mousoulis. The film earned her the Best Female Actor Award at the 2007 Melbourne Underground Film Festival.  The film was accepted into the main program of the Athens Film Festival, Cork Film Festival and the Brussels Fantastic Film Festival. Vanessa was flown over as a guest. (Nocturne, Night of The Vampire is now distributed by Troma.)

In 2009, Vanessa was cast as the lead in horror film Context, the film premiered at the Razor Reel Film Festival in Bruges, in which Vanessa flew over as a guest.  Context is part of the extras on the American release of El Monstro Del Mar by Breaking Glass Pictures Distribution.  (Unfortunately it isn’t listed on the dvd’s cover.)

Later in 2009, Vanessa was accepted into the New Actors Workshop in New York, run by famous film director – Mike Nichols (The Graduate.)  On her return she worked on the film Crazy In The Night starring film director Frank Howson and Prisoner actors Tommy Dysart and Joan Brockenshire.  Vanessa won a second Best Female Actor Award at the 2010 Melbourne Underground Film Festival for her leading role in the film.

In 2011, Vanessa was selected as a Victorian finalist in The Miss Pinup Australia Pageant, where she competed under the title Miss V-Bomb. She was given a spread in Beat Magazine as well as being interviewed by various Victorian newspapers.

In 2012, Vanessa became a freelance writer and mentor for Topic Media, writing over 90 lifestyle articles and winning many writing awards.  That year, she was also commissioned by Australian publisher Hampress to write her erotic memoir Tantric Afternoons.

Tantric Afternoons launched in April 2013 to rave reviews.  Vanessa followed the book’s release with 4 more titles – Tough ChoicePowers At PlayLascivious and her latest book, Don’t Hit Me!

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About the Book:

Don't Hit Me!#1 Amazon Bestseller
# Winner of the 2014 Global eBook Award Bronze (women’s studies)
# Winner of the 2014 Honourable Mention Award London Book Festival (memoir)
# Five-Star Review Midwest Book Review
# Five-Star Review San Francisco Book Review
# Five-Star Review #1 Amazon Hall of Fame Reviewer – UK
# 3 out of 4 stars Official Online Bookclub

Australian actress and author Vanessa de Largie is a survivor of domestic violence.
Don’t Hit Me is the true diarised account of her time living with an abusive man. The story is conveyed through poems, journal entries and fragments of lyrical prose. The book is a snapshot of domestic violence in real time. Raw, poignant and brave – it’s a tale that will stay with you.

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Q: Welcome to Beyond the Books, Vanessa. Can we start out by asking whether you are published for the first time or are you multi-published?

I am a multi-published author.

Q: When you were published for the first time, which route did you go – mainstream, small press, vanity published or self-published and why or how did you choose this route?

I was published by a small press the first time. It happened serendipitously.

Q: How long did it take you to get published once you signed the contract?

It was about a year from first discussions to publication.

Q: How did it make you feel to become published for the first time and how did you celebrate?

Tantric Afternoons was published on the 8th of April 2013, which was the day that Margaret Thatcher died. So, I remember drinking champagne, celebrating my book whilst also celebrating the life of an incredible woman.

Q: What was the first thing you did as for as promotion when you were published for the first time?

I bombarded my social networks and received great support and feedback.

Q: Since you’ve been published, how have you grown as a writer and now a published author?

I’m a professional actress too. But I think in both acting and writing, you can believe that some magic-fairy is going to come along and give it all to you. You can’t afford to wait for that moment. It’s best to be active and do it yourself. You’ll often hear those in high positions scoff at artists who are independent or who self-publish. But every thing you do leads to something else. So I think it’s better to take some sort of action than wait around for a gatekeeper to say yes. I’ve had to do everything myself. It’s character building! But I would not hesitate to go the indie way with any project because often publishers, agents, producers etc will hop on board along the way. A lot of my work has got legs that way. I am a better writer and a more confident business woman. I no longer take offense to rejection. It just means I’m a step closer to success.

Q: What has surprised or amazed you about the publishing industry as a whole?

They are so lovely compared to the entertainment industry. Publishers and writers actually have the grace to reply to emails and answer their phones. The writing and publishing industry is a lot kinder to one’s soul than the acting industry. I am much happier since writing became my main thing.

Q: What is the most rewarding thing about being a published author?

I’m proud of what I have achieved thus far but I intend to do big things over the next decade. I’m only really beginning. Being a published author gives you a platform to raise awareness about things you’re passionate about. It gives you a voice.

Q: Any final words for writers who dream of being published one day?

Don’t dream about it. Take action!

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