Author Interview: Marie Claire Lim Moore

Hello, Claire! I’m so happy to have you here at Cinderella Stories again. Welcome to my blog and thank you so much for granting me this interview. First of all, congratulations on your new book, “Don’t Forget the Parsley.”

1. Would you please tell us about your books: Don’t Forget the Soap and Don’t Forget the Parsley. What led you to write these books and how long did you write these?

Thanks so much for inviting me back to Cinderella Stories. And appreciate all the good wishes and support on my new book.

Don’t Forget the Soap and Don’t Forget the Parsley are family memoirs. In many 02e7c-czje9-yu8aaza2o2blargeways, Don’t Forget the Parsley picks up where Don’t Forget the Soap left off. Many of the stories from the first book were from my childhood and focused on early career experiences. While the second book still includes family anecdotes from when we were kids, there’s more I share about life after children, life after writing my book, etc. There are also a lot of fun stories about my father (and other family members) as well as my mother.

I’ve always wanted to document my parents’ story as new immigrants to Canada and the US, however, only when I had kids of my own did I have the inspiration and discipline to sit down and get it done. I wrote both books during maternity leave with my second and third child.

2. In a nutshell, what do you hope the readers would take away from your family memoirs?

“The happiest people don’t have the best of everything, they make the best of everything.”

3. What’s your most cherished family tradition? Why is it important?

Breaking bread! That is, family meals. This can mean big holidays when it’s with all our relatives and friends or every day with just the five of us. Sitting down for dinner together has always been the highlight of every day for me because it’s when family members get to talk and share with no other distractions. No smart phones, tablets, blackberries or TV.

Don't Forget the Soap Book Cover

Don’t Forget the Soap by Marie Claire Lim Moore

4. In an interview, you mentioned something about legacy. You said, and I quote, “A legacy can come in many forms. In one way, my children are my legacy. In another way, my family memoir is my legacy. If I had to summarize, I would like my legacy to be that I lived my best life, learning from my past, living in the present, and building for the future.”

Each and every one of us long to leave a legacy, what is your message to readers who are currently struggling to make their own mark?

Don’t underestimate the importance of simply living each day to the fullest. The right attitude combined with an appreciation of one’s own roots and values will lead to a successful and positive life.

5. On to the writing side, what is your writing process, do you work on an outline first or just go write without one?

I start with a very rough (and flexible) outline and then try to build out as much as I can.

6. What are the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?

I’ve been delightfully surprised to learn how much the book has resonated with so many different people. Not just Filipinos and Filipino-Americans but all immigrants, women trying to balance it all, everyone who feels close to their family, etc.

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7. Do you have other works in progress? Say, a third book on the family memoir?

I’m currently working with a number of amazing Filipina women (fellow awardees of FWN 100 Most Influential Filipina Women in the World) on a book on women’s leadership.

8. We all have our own stories to tell. What do you think makes a good story? What are your tips to others who want to write their own memoir?

Agree, everyone has at least one book in them. “Write the book you want to read,” is a great piece of advice someone once gave me.

9. Your tips for aspiring authors?

  • Book writing time can be anytime. Many people associate writing a book with going to a secluded place for days maybe weeks and knocking out a book… I had to squeeze in book writing in the 45 minutes between a client meeting and pumping session. Even if you get just one paragraph done during that time, it’s progress. Those minutes and paragraphs add up…
  • Don’t be a perfectionist. In order to do #1 you can’t worry about sentences being perfect, tone being consistent… at least not as you’re in the book drafting phase. Plenty of time to clean up those things later.

There you have it, guys! One of my favorite authors, Marie Claire Lim Moore! I hope you enjoyed the interview. I sure enjoyed writing the questions. If you enjoyed this, you are bound to enjoy her books, too.

Happy reading! ❤

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Don’t Forget the Parsley ( a sequel to Don’t Forget The Soap)

by
Marie Claire Lim Moore

Genre:
Non-fiction memoir
Links:
Also available at Fully Booked
SYNOPSIS:

Marie Claire Lim Moore builds on her first memoir, Don’t Forget the Soap, offering more entertaining stories about her family in this follow up. Like her first book, Don’t Forget the Parsley is a collection of anecdotes from different points in Claire’s life: stories from her second-generation immigrant childhood in Vancouver and New York City mix with recent expat experiences in Singapore and Hong Kong where she balances multiple roles as wife and mother, corporate executive and author. Her positively Filipino parents continue to have a big influence on her whether it comes to managing family and career, meeting heads of state and world leaders or simply making new friends.

From stray observations (everything is funnier at church) and midnight anxieties (if Jessica Simpson gets to go to the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, why shouldn’t I?) to life mantras (don’t let perfection hold you back) and litmus tests (would you serve drinks at my mother’s art show?), Claire’s warm and honest storytelling will resonate with readers and leave them smiling.

Jho-sigstylediv

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

marie claire lim moore - author photo

Marie Claire Lim Moore is a Filipina-Canadian-American working mother and author of Don’t Forget the Soap. After spending the early part of her childhood in Vancouver, Claire moved to New York City and attended the United Nations International School. She went on to study at Yale, climb the corporate ladder at Citi and travel around the world. She met her husband, Alex, while working in Sao Paulo, Brazil and they married in Manila, Philippines shortly before moving to Singapore. Now Mom to Carlos, Isabel, and Sofia, Claire also manages the Global Client business for Citi in Asia.

Claire is regularly ranked among leaders in the Asian-American professional community and her experiences have been written about in The New York Times, USA Today, Smart Parenting, Good Housekeeping and People Asia. She enjoys juggling her thriving career and growing family, fundraising for Filipino community events and promoting work-family balance for women through her talks as well as her writing. Previous speaking engagements have been hosted by Standard Chartered Bank, The Financial Women’s Association of Singapore, and MasterCard Asia.

In 2014, Claire received the 100 Most Influential Filipina Women in the World Award™ (Global FWN100™) that recognizes Filipina women who are influencing the face of leadership in the global workplace, having reached status for outstanding work in their respective fields, and who are recognized for their leadership, achievement and contributions to society, female mentorship and legacy. Claire is also featured in women’s empowerment expert Claudia Chan’s Remarkable Women Series along with female role models Arianna Huffington, Tory Burch and Zainab Salbi.

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Excerpt and Giveaway: Don’t Forget the Parsley by Marie Claire Lim Moore

 

 Don’t Forget the Parsley ( a sequel to Don’t Forget The Soap)

Launch Feb 15, 2016

by
Marie Claire Lim Moore

Genre:
Non-fiction memoir
Links:
Also available at Fully Booked
SYNOPSIS:

Marie Claire Lim Moore builds on her first memoir, Don’t Forget the Soap, offering more entertaining stories about her family in this follow up. Like her first book, Don’t Forget the Parsley is a collection of anecdotes from different points in Claire’s life: stories from her second-generation immigrant childhood in Vancouver and New York City mix with recent expat experiences in Singapore and Hong Kong where she balances multiple roles as wife and mother, corporate executive and author. Her positively Filipino parents continue to have a big influence on her whether it comes to managing family and career, meeting heads of state and world leaders or simply making new friends.

From stray observations (everything is funnier at church) and midnight anxieties (if Jessica Simpson gets to go to the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, why shouldn’t I?) to life mantras (don’t let perfection hold you back) and litmus tests (would you serve drinks at my mother’s art show?), Claire’s warm and honest storytelling will resonate with readers and leave them smiling.

Jho-sigstylediv
EXCERPT:

DWYL  

“Do what you love” (DWYL) has become the unofficial work mantra for our time. It has been considered the opposite of the monotonous corporate job. Between Steve Jobs, Oprah, and every speaker who delivers a commencement speech, doing what you love is the only way to live.

Most people who DWYL have an integrated life. They don’t consider work to be work because they love what they do. What they do professionally is what they care about personally. Most people who DWYL also tend to have a little extra money. They’re not necessarily multi-millionaires but their lifestyle may be partly subsidized by a trust fund, their spouse may earn enough so they can pursue their passion, or they may know that one day they’ll inherit a $3 million dollar apartment that their parents bought for a fraction of that amount decades ago.

There was a wonderfully provoking piece about DWYL written by Miya Tokumitsu for Slate._ In the article, she submits the “Do what you love” mantra that elites embrace actually devalues work and hurts workers. In doing so, she underlines the idea that DWYL is for the privileged few with wealth, social status, education, and political clout. Tokumitsu writes, “DWYL is a secret handshake of the privileged and a worldview that disguises its elitism as noble self-betterment.”

While DWYL is a lovely idea, it’s just not something most people have the luxury to do. But alas, instead of finding a job you love, you can learn to find meaning and success in the job you have. I want to share a few attitudinal tips that have helped me find my balance and DWYL in spite of (and sometimes even because of) my corporate job.

Live a Life of Purpose

 One of the first things that struck me about Alex was that he was the first person I knew (aside from my very practical parents) who didn’t buy into DWYL. “No, you don’t need to do what you love; you just need to have a purpose,” I remember him arguing over caipirinhas at Posto Seis, one of our favorite restaurants in Sao Paulo.

Alex grew up in a small town in upstate New York. To paint the picture of just how tiny of a town, he often tells the story about how his zip code changed after their postman retired. He and his three siblings could run around acres of land, they recognized every car that passed them by, and they were on a first name basis with everyone at the grocery store. While it was a wonderful place to grow up, he was always looking forward to moving to the city when he got older. He aspired to one day work on Wall Street, build a successful career, and have a big family. No one he knew from back home took this path so he never had one to follow.

When he visited the West Point Military Academy, however, he saw how much it had to offer by way of exposure and access. He made it a personal goal to get accepted to the prestigious academy and he achieved it. Anyone who knows my husband well knows that he would be an unlikely fit at West Point. He never liked being told what to do, he would often challenge authority, and he was not exactly clean cut. But my husband can do anything when he knows it’s for a greater purpose.

Today, Alex is the regional treasurer of Citi’s broker dealer business in Asia. He’s great at his job but I don’t know if he would classify it as doing what he loves. At least for him, equally important as loving your job is loving the impact your job has on others. This can mean the internal clients who benefit from the work his team is doing or it can refer to the family he is able to help support.

My parents have a similar point of view. As new immigrants, they weren’t necessarily doing what they loved but they were doing great work and living a meaningful life. Their jobs supported our family, allowing us to spend time together and providing us with opportunities to give back to the community.

Sometimes you have to do things you don’t want to do. My kids have to perform for guests, my husband has to go to church, and I have to wake up in the wee hours. A little sacrifice makes you a better person. Chances are you’ll never love 100 percent of your job. Even when I speak to people who are DWYL they still confess there’s a portion of what they do that they don’t enjoy in the least. Tracie Pang, who runs Singapore’s Pangdemonium Theater, doesn’t like fundraising. I haven’t met her but I’m sure Kristen Stewart hates doing interviews. I don’t love the evening calls associated with my job. Even if you can get to the point where you love 60 percent of what you do and find purpose in the other 40 percent, then you’re golden.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Marie Claire Lim Moore is a Filipina-Canadian-American working mother and author of Don’t Forget the Soap. After spending the early part of her childhood in Vancouver, Claire moved to New York City and attended the United Nations International School. She went on to study at Yale, climb the corporate ladder at Citi and travel around the world. She met her husband, Alex, while working in Sao Paulo, Brazil and they married in Manila, Philippines shortly before moving to Singapore. Now Mom to Carlos, Isabel, and Sofia, Claire also manages the Global Client business for Citi in Asia.

Claire is regularly ranked among leaders in the Asian-American professional community and her experiences have been written about in The New York Times, USA Today, Smart Parenting, Good Housekeeping and People Asia. She enjoys juggling her thriving career and growing family, fundraising for Filipino community events and promoting work-family balance for women through her talks as well as her writing. Previous speaking engagements have been hosted by Standard Chartered Bank, The Financial Women’s Association of Singapore, and MasterCard Asia.

In 2014, Claire received the 100 Most Influential Filipina Women in the World Award™ (Global FWN100™) that recognizes Filipina women who are influencing the face of leadership in the global workplace, having reached status for outstanding work in their respective fields, and who are recognized for their leadership, achievement and contributions to society, female mentorship and legacy. Claire is also featured in women’s empowerment expert Claudia Chan’s Remarkable Women Series along with female role models Arianna Huffington, Tory Burch and Zainab Salbi.

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