Concierge of Chic: Gioia Diliberto

I heard of Gioia through my aunt who attended a seminar about her latest book and exclaimed to me, "You have to interview this woman, she's fascinating!" She was more than right: Gioia is the author of five books, three non-fiction and two historical, inspired by subjects from the 1920s and 30s. The authoress specializes in writing about women's lives and has been a contributor to many publications, including The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, The Los Angeles Times, Smithsonian, Town & Country, and Vanity Fair. I got a chance to catch up with her and ask about her work and her fabulous life. Cannon: At what point in your life did you decide you would become a professional writer? Were you always drawn to writing or did your passion develop over time?. Gioia: I've wanted to be a writer since I could read and write. I've never wanted to do anything else. My first piece of published writing was a short story--published in my elementary school newspaper. C: A lot of people dream about being an author but struggle to turn this dream into reality. What's the biggest challenge in being a writer? What is your advice to people trying to break into your industry? G: It's all about perseverance. Talent isn't rare. I've observed that the people who are most successful in writing are the ones who don't give up under any circumstances, who keep plugging away until they succeed. My chief advice is to write from your heart and your passion; don't pander to the marketplace. Trying to write a bestseller is the kiss of death. C: Your writing focuses on incredible women; who are the women in your life that you admire most? G: As far as women I admire, the choice is as difficult as picking a favorite piece of jewelry. At the moment, Diane von Furstenberg would have to be at the top of the list, since I'm writing her biography, and I've been thinking about her a lot. I admire not only her success, but also her strength of character and determination, her integrity and commitment to giving back to the world that has given her so much. She was an ordinary middle class girl who grew up to be an icon -- It's an inspiring story and a lesson that you should never be a victim. No matter what cards you're dealt, be the heroine of your own life. C: What is your inspiration? Your most recent book takes place in Paris; where, in your opinion, is the most beautiful place in Paris? G: Inspiration comes from the most unlikely places, and it strikes when you least suspect it--like falling in love. I'm hard pressed to name the most beautiful place in Paris--there are so, so many. At the top of the list would be the Pont Neuf, the Luxembourg Gardens, the Marais--actually I could just go on and on! C: What's next for you? G: I'm writing a biography of Diane von Furstenberg. C: What is your favorite Cannon Lewis jewelry piece? G: If I had to pick one thing, on the high end it would be the boulder opal necklace or the gold Chagall-inspired necklace! For more on Gioia and her writings, visit her website here!        

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