Nicole had a great career in Australia as a well-regarded journalist and newsreader with Sky News when her hotelier husband James was offered a new role, first in Hong Kong and then in the ancient Chinese city of Xi’an.
For Nicole, the initial transition was challenging – her whole professional identity until that time had been ‘journalist’, and the role of English-speaking newsreader didn’t quite work in mainland China.
Wanting to work, but realising she needed to change what ‘work’ would look like, Nicole began building a portfolio of roles which included freelance writer, MC and media trainer. She built her portfolio steadily while she lived in Hong Kong however, she found herself pivoting again in Xi’an, when language became more of a consideration.
While living in Xi’an, Nicole returned to her roots and started interviewing differing people she met – but not for the news rather to capture her experience living as one of 1,000 expats in a city of 9 million people.
Returning to Australia in 2017, this research ultimately became the foundation for her latest role – best-selling author. China Blonde was released in late 2020 and is Nicole and her family’s story of living in Xi’an. As blondes.