Friday 1 December 2017

Cashing In On Christmas

My sister arrived back in the country two days ago from where she’s currently residing in Vancouver, Canada. It’s great to have her back with us – she’s probably the person (other than my husband) who understands and ‘gets’ me most, and it’s always fun to do those things we can’t do when we’re in different countries.

One of the things we love to do is watch Christmas movies. You know, the kind they stick on TV on Christmas Day in the afternoon, that usually involve a small town, snow, and two impossibly good-looking actors-I’ve-never-heard-of who fall in love in the Christmas season. (Bonus points if small children / carol singing / midnight church service / appearance by Santa are involved!) 

I love a good Christmas movie or novel / novella as much as the next person. (Probably more!) One of my favourite novella collections was last year’s Aussie Summer Christmas Collection by a number of Australian and international authors, including ACW’s Narelle Atkins, Meredith Resce, Andrea Grigg and Rose Dee. It was great to read Christmas stories set in the sun, with the beach a predominant theme – I found these stories far more relatable than those involving snowy landscapes, and characters rugged up in puffy jackets and beanies and gloves. It’s interesting to consider just how big the market for such things is.

Christmas-themed films and novellas is a huge industry. A quick scan of my (sister’s!) books reveals more than a few, such as these Barbour novella collections: Montana Mistletoe, A Bride by Christmas, Colonial Christmas Brides, A Big Apple Christmas, Connecticut Christmas, Christmas Love at Lake Tahoe, A Biltmore Christmas, etc, etc, with more releasing all the time. Hallmark Channel is this year releasing 21 NEW Christmas movies, with their ‘Countdown to Christmas’ promise of ‘Holiday movies All Day! All Night!’

It’s enough to make me wonder why. Is it the escapism involved, the chance to see a ‘happily-ever-after’ at a time so heavily promoted to be joyous, but which (cynical me believes) is often more stressful? Is it because they often have themes of second chances, that they suggest the 'magic of Christmas' where anything is possible? Is it the opportunity, particularly for North Americans, to watch a family friendly movie when the weather outside is frightful? For my sister and me, we enjoy the vicarious cooling effect of watching snowy landscapes when it’s 30 degrees outside – and playing guess who with the impossibly good looking actors who-we’ve-never- heard-of-so-we-need-to-learn- more-via-IMDB.

Hmm. It’s enough to make an author consider adding a Christmas element just to cash in 😊

So here’s a question for you: do you enjoy reading Christmas themed films / novels / novella collections? If so, what do you enjoy about them?

Carolyn Miller lives in the beautiful Southern Highlands of New South Wales, Australia, with her husband and four children. Together with her husband she has pastored a church for ten years, and worked part-time as a public high school English and Learning and Support teacher.
A longtime lover of romance, especially that of Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer’s Regency era, Carolyn holds a BA in English Literature, and loves drawing readers into fictional worlds that show the truth of God’s grace in our lives. Her Regency novels include The Elusive Miss Ellison, The Captivating Lady Charlotte, and The Dishonorable Miss DeLancey, all available from Amazon, Book Depository, Koorong, etc

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  1. Most Christmas stories I have seen are contemporary romance which isn’t my favourite genre. A historical one might be interesting!

    1. Yes! So many historical periods could have really interesting Christmas traditions that would be fascinating to read about.

  2. Some of those Barbour novellas are on my shelf or the church now. I love reading novellas at Christmas I think because they are easy to read and I have to say I do like reading about other countries. I have read my share of both contemporary and historical. Infact Jillian Hart and Janet Tronstad did 3 mail order bride books (over 3 years) the third one they had a dedication to me which was so cool but what was even cooler was they had the train conductor with the name of Mr Blake. They are historical Love Inspired and a fun read.

    I love watching Christmas movies too just wish they had more on than they do and not the same ones over and over.

    1. I’ve been watching some catch up tv (7plus) and they’ve had a bunch of new made for TV Christmas movies. Happy watching!

  3. Hi Carolyn, yes, I share your love of Christmas books and movies. The escapism is fun and I browse Netflix to try and find the good Christmas movies. I enjoyed watching The Christmas Prince and reading Amy Matayo's latest book, Christmas at Gate 18. Christmas books are also fun to write - thanks for mentioning Seaside Christmas. :)

    1. Yes, I read Amy Matayo’s book too - a different spin on Christmas that’s for sure! It’s certainly a good time of year for people to get their creativity on :)


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