If I’m being honest, I didn’t expect Beth to email me back regarding this author interview, but I knew if I didn’t try, I would never know the outcome, and what a pretty great outcome I ended up getting! Already being a big fan of Beth’s work prior to her release for ‘It Won’t Be Christmas Without You, I knew her debut adult book would be another one of my favourite reads and I can definitely say that I was right about that one. It’s pretty exciting as well to know that I’m the first person to interview Beth on her new Christmas book, so thank you Beth for giving me this opportunity!
Enough rambling! I’ll let you all get on with mine and Beth’s interview, in which we talk about ‘It Won’t Be Christmas Without You‘ and all things related to Christmas!
Welcome to BreakfastAtShelbys, I’m so honoured to have you on here! Why don’t we kick start this interview off with you telling us a bit about yourself?
Sure! I’m Beth Reekles, probably best known as the author behind the Netflix movie and bestselling novel, The Kissing Booth. I started writing on Wattpad at 15, and now, at 24 years old, I’ve published six books and also hold down a day job working in IT. I’m a sucker for musicals and a self-confessed nerd.
‘It Won’t Be Christmas Without You’ is your latest release, which I absolutely loved! Congratulations! Can you tell my readers – who may not have had the opportunity to hear about it yet – what it’s about?
Thanks – I’m so glad you liked it! It follows twenty-something twins Cara and Eloise as they try to have the perfect Christmas – in their own ways. Eloise is a Christmas nut and is devastated when their typical family Christmas goes out the window; and Cara is looking at her dream promotion, if she can just prove herself at work over the holidays… And of course, there’s a dash of romance thrown in too!
‘It Won’t Be Christmas Without You’ is also your very first adult book – what was the writing process like compared to your previous books (Rolling Dice, The Kissing Booth etc.)?
Honestly, the process wasn’t that different! I’ve always written the kind of books I want to read and this was exactly the same. (It seemed like the only Christmas adult books I could find were featuring thirty-somethings, and I just felt like there was a gap for characters my own age.) However, I was determined to write the whole book in a month over the festive season – a challenge I hadn’t set myself with my other books!
‘It Won’t Be Christmas Without You’ follows twin sisters; Eloise and Cara. If any, which sister did you have fun writing about the most?
They were both a lot of fun – I don’t think I could pick a favourite out of the girls – but I really had fun with Eloise’s love interest, Jamie!
Between Eloise – a self-confessed Christmas obsessive – and Cara – a workaholic – who do you find yourself relating to the most?
I think there’s a little of me in all my characters, but I think especially in both Eloise and Cara. Like Cara, I’m driven and ambitious, and like Eloise, I go totally bonkers for anything Christmas. I relate to parts of both of them!
How do you get yourself in to the festive spirit whilst writing out of season?
I won’t lie: while I was editing this during heatwaves in the summer last year, or over Easter this year, absolutely sweltering and with the fan blasting on me, I had to close the curtains and put Love Actually on my DVD player on repeat. It was my go-to to get into the festive spirit. (But I have been known to sing a little Christmas music while I’m pottering around the house at any time of year…)
What is the typical Christmas Day routine for you and your family?
Now my sister and I are officially grown-up, my parents demand a lie-in. I, however, am awake by 6am and start watching Muppet Christmas Carol (my fave!). My sister will wake up soon after and come to my bed to watch the movie with me before we wake up our parents and open stockings. My granddad comes over for the Christmas dinner at lunchtime (he’ll take a nap on the sofa but wake up just in time for the Strictly Come Dancing Christmas special every year!), and my auntie and uncle come over in the evening to exchange some more presents and play games.
What are your favourite traditions that you and your family partake in on Christmas Day?
I love the way Christmas Day starts, with my sister and I watching Muppet Christmas Carol – and I love the evenings, when we all play trivia games. We can get pretty competitive. My granddad always takes a back seat and says he won’t play, but will end up answering a bunch of questions anyway!
What would you say is your go-to Christmas song and movie during the holidays?
Hmm… I’d have to say Arthur Christmas or Muppet Christmas Carol for my go-to movie, and I’ve got a top three for the song: it’s either Merry Xmas Everybody, Christmas Wrapping, or Driving Home for Christmas.
Do you have anything in particular on your wish-list this year for Christmas?
How to Train Your Dragon 3 on DVD. (I love a DVD, and this series is one of my absolute favourites.) I’m easily pleased!
If you could describe ‘It Won’t Be Christmas Without You’ in three words, what would they be?
Cosy, festive, and heart-warming. (Does that count as three if it’s hyphenated???)
Lastly, do you have any future book news that you are able to share with us?
I’m working on more adult books which I’m hoping we’ll do a deal for next year, and I’m excited about the other books in The Kissing Booth series coming next year – the sequel comes out in January and I’ve also written a spin off called TKB: Road Trip for World Book Day!
I can’t wait to find out more about these adult books and I most certainly can’t wait for the next two books in The Kissing Booth series! Thank you so much for being on the blog, Beth – I hope we can do this again soon! 🙂