Monday, 22 December 2014

I'm missing Constantine! (the TV Series)

I just wondered, am I the only one having Constantine withdrawal?

They give you a new show, you get completely and utterly hooked, and then what happens? It didn't air on Saturday (here in the UK) as expected... I spent the entire evening tapping my kindle trying to make it update, but oh no, it turns out that there is a break until mid-January!! How rude is that?

He's currently lying in a sewer, shot and bleeding out with a ghoul from hell about to feast on him, and I'm left drumming my fingers like a base double beat for three weeks?? NOoooooo!

I just can't say enough good things about this show. Season one is just over half way through and I can see it's going to have a massive cult following. Move aside Angel, Scoot over Supernatural, What-evs Warehouse, there's a new king in cult town and he is seriously sexy.

This show is dark. Dark, like I actually got a bit spooked out watching it on my own. Some properly scary moments kept me on the edge of my seat. These characters are only from Episode one, and the show doesn't really hit it's stride until Episode three at the earliest

 Yet it's funny too. Real humour! Fantastic one liners that will be quoted for years, and the eye-rolling of Constantine at things like angels (flap off!) made me giggle out loud. And amusing things that catch the eye in the background like this sign behind him.

 Oh, and there's plenty of sci-fi trivia for us geeks, things alluded to, little quips about other characters from the comics that kind of thing. Even a mention of other dimensions to account for the film. And stuff for the spotters (hidden easter eggs), like the helmet of Doctor Fate, which Liv picks up, and John tells her "I'd put that down before it puts you down." In fact, according to this website there are 17 Easter Eggs just in Episode One

There is an excellent cast for this series too. Matt Ryan looks better than he ever has as John Constantine, and the current female lead, Zed, is one of those women that men want and other women still really like. (Not to mention most of her wardrobe, which I really really like!)
Check out these two urban gothic items (both from Free People fyi)

The woman originally cast to play opposite Constantine was Liv, who was basically written out after episode one in favour of Zed. I could totally see the reasoning behind that; there just wasn't any sexual chemistry between them. I don't know why, I guess sometimes it just works and sometimes it doesn't. But with Zed it is definitely there!
You can check out the body language in this picture, but I confess it was really just an excuse to put in a pic of Matt with his shirt off, sorry!

Although, actually, his chemistry is fairly hot with almost every woman he comes accross, even nuns

And for those in the know, the comic book version of Constantine is in fact bisexual, so maybe there is even a hint of flirtation with the other guys? I'll leave that up to you to decide.

Anyway. This new series is the perfect blend of dark and scary with plenty of humour, an excellent cast and a fantastic premise. The storyline needs fleshing out though, you can tell they have only one season planned right now, which is truly terrifying - how could they get us so hooked with no promise in the bag for more? I think I'll go into melt down if they don't and write it myself! That's the problem with being an author, when you see something this good you just want to take over and start writing scripts, or even fan fiction, just for another hit of Constantine!

 Oh well, now I've got that off my chest. I can go back to my current work in progress, Solstice Magic & Mayhem, which might come out a lot darker than previously intended since I've been loading my subconscious up with all these demons... lol

Do check out books one and two in the series, and drop me a line with any comments on them or, of course, on Constantine  :-)
Stella x
Click on the above Covers to go to Amazon page!

 And keep a look out for the next one, isn't my newest cover fabulous?

Monday, 6 October 2014

Bringing back characters from previous books...

Warning! This post contains spoilers if you haven't read all The Flirting Games books!

I'm having a bit of a bad time of it trying to write the next Flirting Games book just now because we are in the middle of moving house! Trying to settle down and even do a first draft is difficult because my mind feels as cluttered as my desk (which is currently a pile of cardboard boxes stacked next to a bean bag) and I can't seem to think through any sort of plot.

What plot you ask? Well you might have a point there. My Flirting Games books are character driven and nothing all that exciting happens to any of the people in them, except for meeting each other! There are no evil villains trying to kill them, or interesting/sexy supernatural beings. There are no magical doorways into other worlds or visitors from other planets. Just a bunch of kids at an English boarding school.

In every book I have introduced new characters, but the old ones nag at me to be included. Especially Ellie. She's such a personality that I want to write her back in again and again. But to do what? I don't want her and Nate to break up, so she really needs to just go away and be happy.

On the other hand, people just going and being happy is killer for my storylines. Readers ask me all the time "What happened next to Sophie and Jack? Or Grace and Ben?" and I think to myself "Oh dear, not a lot happened, they got together, they were happy, there's hardly any storyline in that..."

It was almost a huge relief, when I was drafting Book Four, to find out that Flora wasn't all that happy with Michael after all, and still hankered for Gabriel. I genuinely thought her story was finished and was a bit sad about it, but no, she nagged me mentally until I gave her and Gabriel a lead role again in book four, and I was so happy I did.

So now what? I know I ought to think about Rose and Leo's wedding, but they can't get married until they are 18, and do I want to jump forward that far in time? Toby Falcon (Rose's brother) has mentioned to me that he would like a girlfriend at some point, but he's quite a bit younger than Rose, so am I writing about 18 year olds or fourteen year olds? Because it is quite a different stage of life.

Michael Brenner is also asking for a come back. He feels hard done by at being cast as a villain, he just wasn't right for Flora, but is there no-one perfect for him as well?

You can see my thought pattern as I try to draft book five. It's all over the shop!
So tell me, dear readers (if you have gotten this far through my procrastinating), what would you most like to see happen? Who would you most like to see back? Give me a push...

Just in case you haven't actually read any of this series and would like to try it: Download now for Free!

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Stella Wilkinson Interviewed by Awesome Gang:

Stella Wilkinson

225371_BLOGJPG_20130313065530148Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I am a full time author with six books currently available, plus three anthologies that I collated and edited for a children’s hospital charity. The anthologies contain nearly 100 short stories donated by authors from all over the world. Look out for the Omnibus Edition in November 2014.
I love writing about young adults and devour paranormal romances, so it was inevitable that they would come together at some point. I’m best known for my Flirting Games Series, but have also recently started a Magic & Mayhem Series, soon to be followed by several other series.
I live in Pembrokeshire in Wales. Widely known as The Land of Dragons. I’m lucky enough to live by the beach, and when I’m not writing I’m generally either tipping sand out of my shoes or cleaning mud off my wellies (it also rains a lot in Wales). I’m an enthusiastic (if dreadful) cook, and love to bake chocolate brownies by the dozen. I also collect antique books and first editions of any genre at all, so my walls are filled with dusty smelly old books, on various boring subjects, that I treasure but my family hates :-)

What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
The last book I wrote was Werewolf Magic & Mayhem. It is the second in a series. I actually wrote the first book, Halloween Magic & Mayhem, just as a fun novella for Halloween, but I got such a lot of fan mail asking me if I was going to continue the story that I decided to write a full length novel for a sequel.
I’m still trying to decide whether to continue the series from there, I expect I will eventually.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I like listening to movie soundtracks to get me in the mood. Like if I’m writing teen romance then I listen to the soundtrack from teen movies like Clueless, Mean girls and American Pie.
I eat strawberry liquorice shoelaces to help me concentrate.
If I get really stuck then I go into World of Warcraft and try to complete a quest

What authors, or books have influenced you?
Is it considered a bit yesterday to say that I still love Harry Potter? My Flirting Games Series is set in an English Boarding School and I like to envision it as being a bit like Hogwarts but without the ghosts and the magic.

What are you working on now?
I’m always working on at least three books. Right now I’m trying to finish book four in The Flirting Games Series, called Good @ Games. I’m also writing another teen romance short novel called Notice Me, and I’ve started outlining a brand new series called ESP about a group of ordinary people with some special powers.

What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I think that interacting with readers is key to keeping up with what they want to read. So I read a lot of what they say on Goodreads, but I don’t post much. I don’t want people to think that I’m there to promote because I’m not, I’m there to learn. Basically the best method is to know what your readers want and to try to keep producing it.

Do you have any advice for new authors?
Yes, lots. I actually get a lot of emails about this, so I wrote a whole blog post on the subject, check it out here:

What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Write, publish, repeat.
Also never never release anything without a professional editor.
The journey of 1000 miles starts with a single step
Writing is a marathon, not a sprint
I have all of the above on post it notes over my desk

What are you reading now?
I’ve always got several books on the go.
I’m reading Wool by Hugh Howey. It’s not my usual type of book, but it’s so good that how could I not read it?
I’m also reading Juliet Blackwell’s latest release, called A Vision in Velvet. It’s book five in her Witchcraft Mysteries Series. A great series that combines witchcraft with a murder mystery and has some wonderful characters. She’s such a good writer that I’d read a paint tin if she’d written on it.
And I’ve just started A Fault in our Stars, because it is at heart a young adult romance, even if it is a very poignant and sad one, and I think it’s really important to keep up with the books in your own genre that are popular. So far I can totally see why everyone loves it so much.

What’s next for you as a writer?
Just to keep writing. Since I quit my day job to focus on writing full-time, I’ve never been happier than I am now. Poorer yes, but happy lol
I hope that one day my income will actually be enough to cover all my bills, I think I’d better stop buying so many books!

If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
Ooh, good question.
First I would definitely take Notes from a Small Island by Bill Bryson. Just to remind me of home. You’ll end up snorting coffee out your nose, laughing at this book. I almost wet myself reading his chapter on British car-parks. Perhaps if I were American I might take The Lost Continent instead. Either way, he’s the funniest writer on the planet.

Riders by Jilly Cooper. I know, it’s totally 80′s, but never has a book been written that contains so much. Action, adventure, romance, hero’s, villains, and characters that you love and hate not to mention the horses and the dogs. It’s just got such a lot of stories all tied together that you couldn’t ever get bored of reading it, so it’s perfect for a desert island.

The Bible. I’m not religious, but this book is a tome and a half! It would keep me occupied for years. It literally contains hundreds of stories, and perhaps after a long time on the island, I might start to understand some of them…

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

New website up and running!

Finally I have gotten around to making my website live! It seems like I've been humming and hawing forever about how I want it to look, but I've been asked so many times recently whether or not I have a website that I just thought I'd better get on with it and finish it!

Any ideas for improvement will be received with cheerful consideration, as with all things, it is a living document and open to changes. Have I missed something out? Was there something you particularly wanted to see or to know that I've omitted? You can now use the Contact page to let me know!  :-)

Now, I have spent enough hours on this when I'm supposed to be writing, so I'd better get back to my current work in progress, but I hope you will all stop by often to see updates, to check on forthcoming releases, or just to catch up with me.

Best wishes!

Monday, 7 July 2014


What is Nanowrimo? It stands for: National Novel Writing Month (I think).

I first did this in 2012 and using Nanowrimo I wrote the first draft of The Flirting Games, which now gets hundreds of downloads a day on Amazon, this then encouraged me to write several more in the same series. Of course at the end of my first Nanowrimo, I did only have a very rough draft and it required quite a lot of polishing, but it was a great starting point.

Nano usually runs in April, July and November, and this month I have decided to participate again. The task is basically to write a novel in a month. They recommend a word count of around 50,000 and you get lots of encouragment and support to reach your target.

I have been a little wimpy, what with a ton of family commitments to consider as well, and have set my own word count goal of 25,000.  (They let you set whatever you like and it still works the same). I think 25k will give me a decent novella, and who knows, maybe later I will expand it.

My plan was that if I could write 1000 words a day then I should in fact finish early! (Especially as July is a long month anyway), but it never happens in reality does it. We are now on Day 7 and I have written just under 5000 words.

But it's a wonderful incentive, it really focusses you to write, and I recommend to anyone reading this that thinks they might like to write a novel, that they give Nano a go, just for the fun of it, because you never know!

Also I have been put in a brilliant cabin (the format is like an online summer camp for writing), which is really chatty and full of other writers giving each other inspiration and encouragment.

You are also encouraged to load up a blurb, a title and a cover if you have one, which I think is a great motivator as well, because once you have those things, the book begins to feel real.

So here's what I'm doing this month:
Title: Romancing the Stove

Blurb: When Paige gets assigned to help typical lad, Harvey, with passing Home Economics, they struggle to get along. Gradually though, he begins to be seduced by her cooking if not by the subject itself.

And here is the cover!

So keep your fingers crossed for me finishing it this month, and look out for this book joining my others on the online shelves in the near future :-)

If you would like to be kept informed of my new releases then do sign up for my mailing list here:

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Want to be a writer? Go for it! Tips and thoughts...

I get a fair bit of mail from teenagers who have read my books and tell me that they are thinking of writing something similar. So I thought it might be useful if I posted a few thoughts I have on what you should do if you are one of them.

Firstly, I don't have a publisher. I publish direct to Amazon, to googleplay and to Smashwords (who distribute to ibooks, B&N etc on my behalf). I know we all dream of seeing our books in a bricks and mortar bookshop, of picking up our very own paperback and seeing other people reading it on the train, but the times are changing. These days it isn't a single publisher who decides if your book is worthy, it's the readers. With the invention of e-reading devices you can now get your work out to the entire globe with a few clicks and it is the readers themselves who decide if your book swims or sinks straight out of sight. And you know what? I think there's something very right about that...

So where do you start? You need to write the book. Just write it. Write it as a short story and watch it unfold, or write a plot outline and fill it in, or write one chapter at a time one evening a week and you have a book before you know it. Just write it. It doesn't matter if it's a mess, you can tackle that later, but get the words down. That's the hardest, most time-consuming bit of all, I promise. I could write a whole post on how to do that bit, but that's a different story, and to be honest, a different process for every single writer out there (though I would be happy to share my own process if you are particularly interested).

So you have a first draft? Now what?

1) Start editing. re-read and rewrite over and over.
2) Find Beta readers. Use your family and friends if you feel you can. But I don't, I prefer strangers on the Internet who will give me a more honest critique. There are loads of websites where you can find people who might be interested in reading your work and giving an opinion.
3) Don't take everything the Beta's say too much to heart. Try to extract any practical advice and don't lose your voice if you make more changes based on their opinions.
4) Get a professional proof reader. This is crucial! I've deleted so many self published books I started reading simply because of spelling and grammar errors! It is extremely unprofessional, and although even the best proofreader in the world won't catch everything, they are worth their weight in gold. Yes - you do have to pay for them, but your auntie or your friend next door will not do the same job. If you want some recommendations, I am happy to provide them.
5) Buy a great cover. Before you invest serious money in a custom made cover, really check out the pre-made sites. There are thousands of amazing covers out there that you can pick up from $25 - $60 if you buy a pre-made. You just chose one and then email the designer. They add in your title and your name (plus tag-lines if you want) and it is good to go, yay.

You should now have a book and a cover. That's all you need to publish...

Okay, I know that a lot my readers are too young to have accounts and be in a position to set up payments, so I'll very briefly cover that before moving on: If you are under 18 in the UK (I'm not sure what the age is elsewhere) then you can not publish and get paid. It sucks, but that's the reality. So, your options are to either get your parents to publish for you, or to release your book for free. There are only so many places that will take it for free. Certainly not Amazon. But don't be disheartened! This is a great marketing opportunity for you. Start off on the free sites, places like Wattpad, and build a fan-base. That way, the moment you are old enough, you can release on the paid sites and already have buyers waiting for your next great novel. Set up an email address and have fans email you to sign up for your mailing list. You can then email them all direct the moment you release a new book and keep building that base, then one day you can email them and say "my new book is now available on Amazon for x $," and you have sales right out the gate!

The other advantage of this route is that publishers and film makers and all kinds of useful people may very well see your work and you have a massive head start. You may even find your book being picked up to become a movie before you are even old enough to go and see it... Don't laugh, it has happened!

For those of you that are old enough to set up a publisher account. Spend some serious man hours getting familiar with the process of loading up a book and filling in the relevant forms. It is worth it. You only have to do it once and from then on you are set to release book after book.

The ins and outs of publishing are too numerous to fit into a blog post. But if you have done all the steps above then you are ready and I would personally be more than happy to guide you on that road. I don't think you will need me to, but I'm here if you do have any questions.

There is nothing I like better than seeing a new writer succeed in this amazing new world of e-books, and to see them having their books singled out by the people that actually read them. So with that in mind, I am going to take a big leap of faith (after all, you must be serious about it to have read this far) and give you my personal email address. If you would like further information and advice then just ask me.

And lastly (and very importantly) Good Luck!

Search for books by Stella Wilkinson at all good online retailers, or pick up her first book FREE here:

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Reviews of Juliet Blackwells Witchcraft Mysteries

As I'm currently writing my own Magic & Mayhem witchy series, (Book #1 FREE on Amazon I have been reading, no devouring, similar style books and have fallen in love with Juliet Blackwell's Witchcraft Mysteries. They are a little more mature than my own, which are aimed at young adults, but they are written with great humor, some characters that literally jump off the page, and Juliet has captured some men that make my heart thump :-) They are the story of 'born witch' Lily Ivory. Here are the covers:

The best pictures of Lily are of course off the covers of the books, but she is just a cartoon, if I had to pick a real life person who best sums up how I imagine her to look, then I would chose Jennifer Love Hewitt in her cute 1950's style outfits when she played Melinda in Ghost Whisperer.

There are five books in the series already and I'm going to review all of them! Basically because as soon as I finished one, I had to read the next one. And as each one arrived I was like this

I'm not going to type out the plot of each book, but here's the official blurb from the first one to give you an idea:

Secondhand Spirits

#1 of the Witchcraft Mystery Series

Lily Ivory is not your average witch. Her spell-casting powers tend to draw mischievous spirits while keeping normal humans at a distance. But now her vintage clothing store could give her a chance to make friends in San Francisco....
Lily hopes for a normal life when she opens Aunt Cora's Closet. With her magical knack for vintage fashion -she can sense vibrations of the past from clothing and jewelry—her store becomes a big hit.
But when a client is murdered and children start disappearing from the Bay Area, Lily may be the only one who can unravel the crime. She tries to keep her identity a secret while investigating, but it's not easy—especially under the spells of sexy "mythbuster" Max Carmichael and powerful witch Aidan Rhodes. Will Lily's witchy ways be forced out of the closet?

Each book is a murder mystery, and contains a host of well rounded characters. Bronwen and Maya, who work in the shop are great, as is Inspector Romero, and Oscar, her Familiar, needs an entire review of his own, even the clothes are detailed so vividly that you want to find her outfits and buy them, but it's the men in Lily's life that really jump off the page. So I've trawled the internet trying to find pictures that do them justice, lol!

Max Carmichael: A Myth Buster. He and Lily are attracted to each other from the start, but their personal beliefs just can't gel. I could search the internet for days, but I'd never find someone better to play Max than Sam Worthington, he really is the epitome of strong male role, he's all man this one!

Aidan Rhodes, Male witch is described as blond and unnaturally attractive with boyish blue eyes. He and Lily have some rather explosive sexual chemistry, but she's extremely wary of him. His face was hard to find, but I think this Ralph Lauren model has pretty much nailed Aidan's looks and style as I envision them -

And lastly there's Sailor. Is it possible to lust after a fictional character from a book? I certainly think so. He's the ultimate bad boy, dark, brooding and gorgeous.  Sailor is so wrong and so right for Lily. I wanted to see them together from the moment he appeared, though it took another couple of books before there was a hint. But Lily isn't the type to have a smooth love life. I think Sailor is going to give her a nice bit of rough before the smooth ;-)

So there they are. I hope you like my choices for the cast?

Now the really exciting news!

The new book in the series is due for release next month!! I'm so excited! The cover has been revealed:

 I hope you love them as much as I did. Juliet Blackwell is such a fabulous writer, so go and get these books!! (And if you like them, then you should like mine too, wink wink!)
If you would like to be kept informed my new releases then sign up to my mailing list here:  I never spam, I will only email you with my new releases and promotions. Plus the occasional freebie!

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Review of Cassie Mae - Reasons I Fell for the Funny Fat Friend, and all the others!

Recently I wrote reviews of 'Switched' and 'How to Date a Nerd' by Cassie Mae on Goodreads. Those of you who read it may recall my response was something like this:
So how could I not go and read all her other books? I can start by saying there weren't enough of them! I downloaded Reasons I Fell for the Funny Fat Friend.
I was this as I started to read:

Basically, I'm a fan! It was funny.

On to the actual review:
Was it as good as Switched? No, it was a simpler storyline with two great main characters. Hayley isn't actually particularly fat, which for some reason I found disappointing, but she did have some self esteem issues and was a total sweetie. Brody is a way too lifelike! He's a boy in the real sense rather than the romantic sense. I loved following his train of thought and watching him being won over by the girl with the bigger personality. There's no cliff hanger here, but it's a fantastic fun read and I'm keeping it for a reread sometime. I think Cassie is an author who is clearly going from strength to strength. I also read 'Friday Night Alibi' and loved it, but I think her later stuff is even better. Switched was brilliant, but How to Date a Nerd made my top 5 fav books.

I know, I know, I've just reviewed 5 books all at the same time without giving each one enough credit, but when I find an author I like, I tend to devour on mass.

I guess my final word is that I love Cassie Mae and each book has been even better than the last, so start with the first one and work your way up and if you value my opinion at all then go and pre-order the new one:

Because it's gonna make you feel like this:

Hurrah! Halloween Magic & Mayhem now Free on Amazon!

That's right folks! Ahead of the release of the sequel, Amazon have now made Halloween Magic & Mayhem FREE! Zero, Zip, Nada, Nothing, Nought! LOL, Grab a copy while it stays that way and hopefully you will like the sequel too :-)

Find it here:

Halloween Magic & Mayhem
How on earth did I end up here? I was supposed to be at a party kissing the boy of my dreams, instead I’m dancing naked on the town common, on Halloween, with a Coven of strange women who might be witches, a bunch of zombies that I have to return to their graves, a talking crow, and my pet ghost thrown in for good measure. Just yesterday I was an ordinary teenager…

On her sixteenth birthday Emily Rand discovers that she is a witch. Unable to control her spells she unwittingly raises zombies, and corporealizes the ghost haunting her house. She finds herself in a race against time to put everything right if she has any hope of getting to a certain Halloween party and seeing a certain boy again. 

If you would like to be kept informed of new releases from Stella Wilkinson, don't forget to sign up for her mailing list here:

Monday, 14 April 2014

Cover Reveal! Werewolf Magic and Mayhem

Book One - Halloween Magic & Mayhem ( ) was a fun Halloween novella about sixteen year old Emily Rand, and the chaotic and amusing consequences of her first night of being a witch.

Following on from the success of that book and bowing to your requests for more from Emily and her Familiar, Bob; I have written a full length sequel.

Werewolf Magic and Mayhem - Due for release 22 April 2014

So here is the much awaited cover! Find the blurb below and don't forget to check out Book 1 first if you're interested.

Werewolf Magic & Mayhem

New witch Emily Rand and her crow Familiar, Bob, are back for another bout of magical mayhem. Emily is approached by a werewolf called Fletcher who wants her to cure him of his affliction. Despite her lack of experience, Emily decides to try to help Fletcher. Unfortunately her spells aren’t known for going according to plan, and Emily accidentally divides Fletch from his handsome human body and brings forth his inner wolf in a very real sense. Now she has to find a way to put it right by the next full moon or Fletcher will be stuck as a wolf forever. A Paranormal - Comedy - Romance novel from best selling young adult author Stella Wilkinson.

If you would like to be kept informed of new releases from Stella Wilkinson, don't forget to sign up for her mailing list here:

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Great Article for Young Adult Writers / Readers

Re-blogging this from TED Blog

The best way to get a book deal? Write a story 19 million people want to read

17-year-old Beth Reekles had a really good year. She published two books; appeared on national TV; sold the film rights for her first book, The Kissing Booth; graduated from high school and started college; and earned a spot on TIME’s list of the most influential teens of 2013, alongside household names like Malia Obama and Justin Bieber. And still she found time to watch five seasons of Gossip Girl.
How did such a young woman get so far so fast? When Beth was 15, living at home in Wales, she wrote a novel (“the kind of book I wanted to read”) and put it up on the story-sharing website Wattpad. 19 million views later, she won a three-book contract with a young adult division at Random House to publish that first book, The Kissing Booth, and two more, including the recently published Rolling Dice. That kind of transition from self-publishing to traditional publishing is rare — but her true-to-life stories of teen romance, sans vampires and werewolves, must have tapped a void that needed filling.
This much-in-demand writer has developed a routine that helps her stay focused. Beth likes to write alone with her computer and a cup of tea. (She avoids writing with others in the room, because she hates the idea that someone might be reading over her shoulder.) If she’s feeling blocked, she turns on background music — such as the soundtrack to Doctor Who or Pirates of the Caribbean — to help her feel more creative. “Something emotive and exciting,” she says. She experiments with form as well — on her Wattpad page, you can find short stories, chapters and novellas, including the holiday one-off “Deck the Halls.”
She’s a freshman at the University of Exeter now and plans to major in physics. She’s busy preparing for January exams and working on her third book. This summer, when classes end, she’s excited to spend her summer typing away, possibly working on a sequel to The Kissing Booth.
We talked to Beth via email about self-publishing, J.K. Rowling, and letting go of bad reviews. Our first question:
What inspired you to write a novel at 15? Here’s Beth –
I was looking for a high school romance that didn’t involve a vampire or werewolf – every teen romance seemed to have a paranormal element, and I was sick of that. So when I couldn’t find the kind of book I wanted to read, I decided to write it instead. That’s how I ended up writing The Kissing Booth.
What did you think when Random House called you up and said, “Hey, want to write a few more for us?”
I was thrilled! I’d thought about traditionally publishing my books, but I didn’t think it would actually ever happen, and certainly not like that! Sometimes I still can’t believe it.
A lot of people in the publishing world are wary of self-publishing. What is your take on it?
Self-publishing is making writing something that a lot more people take seriously now. It gives a lot of new and younger writers the opportunity to try and put their work out there quickly and easily, so it’s encouraging more and more people to write.
What are you writing now?
Right now I’m working on my third book for Random House, which is going to be another young-adult romance, called Out of Tune.
How do you come up with a new character or story? What’s your process?
I usually get the ideas for characters before I come up with a story. My characters seem to have lives of their own that I have to try and put down on paper. I’ve never been any good at planning stories; I often go with the flow and don’t know how the story will turn out until I’ve finished it!
Which authors do you really admire?
J.K. Rowling has always been one of my role models. I’ve loved the Harry Potter series since I began reading it as a child, and when I read about how she persevered despite all the rejection letters, it’s really encouraging and inspiring to me as a writer.
Are there any responses you’ve gotten from fans that have really stuck with you?
I get so many messages from young girls telling me that I’ve inspired them to write, or that they don’t usually read but tried my book and loved it. Those are the ones that really stick with me. They’re very humbling messages to receive, and they always make my day! It’s brilliant to hear that I’ve encouraged other girls to read and write more.
What is one thing you know that you wish everyone knew?
One bad piece of criticism can make you feel like everything you’re doing is a waste of time, but you really need to put it in perspective. Take note of all the good things people are saying!

Monday, 31 March 2014

Something to Take on the Trip - OUT TODAY!

Dear Everyone! Another book out today. This one is an anthology that I was very proud to be a part of. 100% of proceeds go to Charity. Wallace and Gromit's Grand Appeal, which is a Bristol Children's Hospital based charity.

The ebook is live on Amazon now (UK) (US) and costs less than a cup of coffee to download. 

The paperback will be out in about a week. Please support the charity and pick up a copy. It is over forty short stories, each only around 1,000 words, and we were lucky enough to get some fairly big hitters on board (My personal flap being David Gerrold, who wrote The Trouble with Tribbles, the very famous crossover episode on Star Trek. I snuggled my own contribution right up against his, lol. Go and check out some of the other big names too!)
Thank you! Stella x

Something to Take on the Trip is loaded with short stories for people who have a limited amount of time to read a bit of something everyday.

Aimed at commuters and people on journeys short and long, each story is just the right length for your trip. Comedy, romance, drama, mystery, science fiction and everything in between, there is something here for you whatever your mood!

This is no ordinary anthology. Aimed at readers 18 - 80 it contains a variety of genres from a variety of authors. The writers who contributed to this book come from locations across 4 continents, and kindly donated their work in aid of a children’s hospital charity.

Contributing Authors: Kevin J. Anderson, Aditi Bathia, Graham Brand, Donald R. Broyles, Cora Burhlert, Neil Bursnoll, Jamie Campbell, Michael Carmella, T.L. Champion, Helen Cho, Samuel Clements, J. David Core, Cate Dean, Stephen Drivick, Dan Fiorella, Erin Garlock, David Gerrold, Edward M. Grant, Sheila Guthrie, Jamie Horyski, Mary Kincaid, Paul B. Kohler, Paul Levinson, Kevin A. Lyons, Kelly Lytle, Ron McLarty, John L. Monk, Lindy Moone, E. Percy Muove, Debadatta Pati, Dario Solera, H.S. Stone, Joe Tannian, Vincent Trigili, Karen Tucker, Rich Walls, Stella Wilkinson, Richard Wolanski and Frank Zubek.

Monday, 10 March 2014

What song makes you feel confident? Use it!

What song makes you feel confident? Have a really good think about this one because I want you to pick your very own theme tune.

You want a song that makes you feel really good inside, that makes you want to smile. It also needs to be something a bit bolshy, so that it gives you a "Go Me!" feeling too.

For some people it will be an angry feminist song, for others it will be a Disney style pretty song, for some it will be totally unrelated to the words and just be something that brings up a feel good memory, but for most it will be something in the middle, a girl empowering song.

Mine is Supermodel by Jill Soble. It was so fab in the movie Clueless, check it out below. Mind you some of the words shouldn't be taken too literally, e.g. I didn't eat yesterday, I'm not going to eat today and I'm not going to eat tomorrow! That totally isn't me, I love to eat ;-) just eat healthy.  But the lines: 'Cos I'm young, and I'm hip, and so beautiful! Those make me feel it.

You need to listen to your theme song several times before you go out, or when you need an extra boost, and it should really pump up your confidence.

Then at that crucial moment, like when that perfect boy approaches, you need to play it in your head, and then, just like that, you will feel all pumped up and confident again. Chances are that as you play it in your head, you will start to smile, you will look more confident and sexy just because you are thinking of your very own feel good theme song!

So get listening to everything that makes you feel empowered and choose one just for you!

Here's mine:

Monday, 6 January 2014

Doing a Goodreads Book Giveaway

As so many people have already read book one and two (especially as book one is free! I thought I would do a giveaway for Book Three, Further Flirting Games as it only came out just before Christmas, (

You can sign up on Goodreads to recieve a free paperback copy and I will be shipping it out to the winner on 5 February 2014.

Good Luck!

Sherlock and Moriarty Kiss

OK, it's been pointed out to me that in the interest of balance I absolutely have to blog about the kiss between Sherlock and Moriarty as well.

What can I say? It didn't have the passion of his kiss with Molly, but it had way more build up and sexy tension. The way Moriarty looks at him, his eyes flicking to Sherlock's mouth like he can't resist it - yet he does, he lets Sherlock figure out what he's thinking. It takes him only milliseconds, he can read any facial expression after all, and he recognises the subtle look and the shift in Moriarty's thinking, he spots the exact moment when Moriarty thinks about kissing him and less than a second later you can see the process in his own mind, him deciding whether or not to go for it. Then he does and every Sherlock fan on the planet let out a simultaneous gasp. But it was shocked delight. The fanfiction is bursting at the seams with Sherlock and Moriarty romance. There is no doubt at all that Gatiss and Moffat put this in for the serious fans to squeal over.
And yes, it's still bloody thrilling and takes the Stella award for sexual tension, but not for the perfect kiss, that one still goes to Sherlock and Molly Hooper....

Friday, 3 January 2014

Sherlock and Molly's Kiss

I got up at 4am this morning to watch this again on replay. I watched this kiss 16 times this morning, trying to analyse what made it the sexiest, most impactive kiss I've ever seen.

As a writer (and one who writes a fair few kiss scenes) I wanted to find the words to capture a kiss that blows you away like this one did for me.

It had everything. I know crashing through the window like that was a bit cheesy cliche, rather like the 80's milk tray man (I really wish they'd bring those adverts back), but it was the way he tousled the glass from his hair and reached for her that made me yearn to be her more than I've ever wanted to be anyone (this from a girl who spent an entire year going to bed in a catwoman outfit in the hope that an adventure would suddenly happen in the night). As Sherlock draws Molly in for the kiss you can see she is completely and utterly powerless to resist. She stares at him in wonder as he is both strong and tender in that moment, then she melts completely into the kiss. I melted with her, sliding off the sofa right into a big puddle on the floor. My heart was thumping and my legs were jelly.

Why? That's what I want to know! I mean yes, Benedict Cumberbatch is fairly stunning, but not actually my type. I met him once at a party about ten years ago, but I thought he was a bit on the skinny side, and I was much more smitten with a boy who wore a red nose and those glasses where the eyeballs bounce out. He made me laugh. Of course he went on to become pretty famous too, he was Rory Kinnear, and in hindsight that was one kiss I really wish I'd followed up on, but I didnt feel that about Benedict.

Of course, we all fancy him as Sherlock. Just as I fancied David Tennant enormously when he was Doctor Who. We love those clever clever boys don't we. But even then I didn't go jelly legs when he was on tv. So what sucked me into his kiss with Molly? It was the kiss itself. It was intergalactic cosmic sexy! It burned right off the screen. I can only applaud their incredible acting in that moment to so move me, and most of all, I want to know if the writer wrote it just like that or if the director made them do it over and over until he felt the heat coming off it?

So how the hell do I write a kiss with that kind of impact? Could you?