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Author Interview: Isabella Eden Chats about Sweet is Her Kiss

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Get ready to learn more about the book Sweet is Her Kiss in this discussion with sapphic author Isabella Eden.

Join us for an exclusive peek behind the scenes as we quiz Isabella Eden about Sweet is Her Kiss, writing, reading, and more.

This book is part of the Beach Reads category in the 2024 IHS Reading Challenge.

Why did you write Sweet is Her Kiss?

Last year my dad went on a world cruise. Yep, four months onboard a ship that literally took him around the world. I was very jealous. Especially when we went down to the harbour to wave him off and there, milling with rest of the crew, was a woman in uniform — crisp white shirt, aviator glasses, four stripes on her shoulders — you know what I’m saying. I knew I had to write a cruise ship romance with the Captain in charge.

Who is your favorite character in the book?

My favourite character is Clara — not because I’m any good at cooking, mind! Clara is a Michelin-starred chef and I’m rubbish in the kitchen. But Clara is also pretty cheeky and mischevious — and will eat just about anything…

What was the biggest challenge writing this book?

The biggest challenge in writing this book was that I’ve never actually been on a cruise myself. I sail a lot, so I was able to add that pure joy to the story. Jax might be the captain of the most exclusive ship on the sea, but at heart, she longs for the simplicity of the wind in the sails, the salt spray on her cheeks, the dolphins who leap across the bow of her tiny yacht — and someone to share that pleasure with.

What part of Sweet is Her Kiss was the most fun to write?

Researching cruises! This was made so much more fun by google throwing cruise ads at me once it figured out what I was up to. So many great cruises! I had to confine my story to the Mediterranean, so researching the Greek islands and the many destinations in Italy, Croatia, France and Spain was also a tonne of fun. Croatia is definitely on my bucket list now.

Where do you usually write, and what do you need in your writing space to help you stay focused?

Lately, I’m quite fond of going to the library to write. In the middle of the day, it’s often empty and I can snag the best seats near the windows. It’s like a free office with comfy chairs and air-conditioning and a cafe just down the street. Plus there’s that book-smell, which I like 🙂

What’s your favorite writing snack or drink?

Mandarins. They are so handy. Little bit sized pieces of sweet, juicy goodness that explode in your mouth like sunshine and happiness. I may or may not line all the segments up and eat them in order of declining seed content saving the best til last. They go very nicely with a cup of tea and a few squares of chocolate. Don’t wrinkle your nose at this, but the skin is also amazingly good. The ‘Imperial’ mandarins are an Australian heirloom variety. (I have a tree in my garden.) They’re the first to ripen each year, have the best peel-ability, are super sweet and the skin is great for just munching or dehydrating.

What has helped or hindered you most when writing a book?

Cold feet. My brain just can’t function if my feet are cold. But more seriously, I know that I experience really bad writer’s block at the 60% point of every book I work on. That’s the point where things get emotional and characters need to make key decisions etc. Like a big chicken, I always doubt myself at this point, no matter how much plotting and planning I’ve done. I usually take a break for a few days and sulk that I’m in the same silly doldrums again. Then I snap the elastic of my big girl pants and get back to work!

If you could be mentored by a famous author (living or not), who would it be?

Clare Lydon. I am always in awe of her ability to craft a story that hits every mark. I admire her light-hearted approach to just about everything.

Describe your favorite reading spot.

I have a Reading Chair. It’s an old wingback chair I found on the side of the road. It didn’t fit in my little car at the time, so I called a friend and stayed there, sitting in the chair until she turned up with her SUV. I wanted that chair so bad! It’s threadbare in a few places, but it is soooo comfy. My gratitude to whoever’s butt did the hard work before me squashing that chair into the perfect shape! It sits in my loungeroom next to the window and a potted palm. I generally have to tip the cat off it before I can read there.

Do you only read books in one genre or do you genre hop?

I’m up for any book with interesting, inspirational women, but mostly I’m drawn to books that are outside of my own experience. Reading can take you to so many wonderful places you might never have the chance see in real life.

Meet Isabella Eden

Isabella Eden writes sweet and sultry sapphic romance novels with a touch of spice. Her characters are formidable, relatable women who love wholeheartedly, and happy endings are guaranteed. She lives in Australia in a small country town with an overweight cat and a glasshouse full of retired houseplants. She has a small orchard and makes limoncello to die for.

Isabella Eden is a pen name. Just so you know. But everything else here is true.

Visit Isabella Eden’s Website

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Author Interview