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Will technology limit or improve the future of books?

The Bookshelf Reviews interviews Joan Ellis on the Girls LoveTo Read blog tour.


I am a luddite. No point pretending. You’d see right through me. Or your Google-glasses would. I don’t own an e-reader but I am sure it is only a matter of time. I’m a ‘late-adopter’ as marketeers dub people like me who are the last to catch on to gizmos and are forever playing catch-up.

On stage at Isle of Wight Literary Festival

Like a 100 yards swimming badge but better.

Like a 100 yards swimming badge but better.

Oh what a night. Last Thursday saw me at the Isle of Wight Literary Festival performing excerpts from all four of my books. The setting, glorious Northwood House, couldn’t have been better. There was even a chandelier in the room.

VFRINGE: Podcast: I am Ella. Buy me.

Have a little listen-in to highlights from my VFringe show. There’s a couple of readings from my new novel: I am Ella. Buy me, set in Adland in the 80s. There’s also tales of working with great talent like Paula Yates and Felicity Kendall plus my take on the real mad men of Adland. It’ll make your hair curl. Enjoy. x

Joan Ellis ‘I Am Ella, Buy Me’ by The Ventnor Fringe on Mixcloud

VFringe – flushing loos and flashing lights

First night of the VFringe was a blast. Loved every minute. Big thanks to the friends who turned out and some strangers too, including the unsuspecting people I hijacked at the Ventnor Carnival and invited to my show: I am Ella. Buy me. One lady even came on crutches – quite a feat given the venue was up a hill in the Scout Hut at The Woodland Bar. It’s an idyllic setting. A place where magic happens.

I conjured up the ad industry in the 80s. I could smell the smoke in the bars in Soho and taste the one too many wines that got drunk in those heady, hazy days. I was an advertising copywriter and back then advertising was a showy, sexist but spectacular industry. It gave me the opportunity to work with advertising greats like Tony Kaye and Trevor Beattie as well as amazing talent like Penelope Keith and Harry Enfield. 

IOW Radio – Ventnor Fringe readings

Listen up! Here I am banging on about the Ventnor Fringe. I’m there 14/15/16 August reading ‘I am Ella. Buy me’ and talking about my life in mad, bad Adland in the 80s.

Surreal experience hearing myself on the radio – they describe me as a ‘local’ author – yet I sound like Shirley out of Eastenders!

Hope to see you in the Woodland Bar. Mention this blog and I’ll buy you a drink. x

Carol Piner review: I am Ella. Buy me.

Joan Ellis’ “I Am Ella, Buy Me” reads like the life a lot of us have lived
and some of us have yet to live. By that, I mean our so-called professional
lives. The life that feeds us, runs our cars and pays our mortgages. Yes,
that one. The one that drives us near insane or it would if the people that
pepper our professional lives don’t first.

Absolut D&AD

absolut xray

absolut xray

You know what it’s like when you really want something – you work for it, strive for it and then it happens. Hurray! You’re thrilled. But it’s taken you so long to achieve your aim, the timing is all wrong.

My poster for Absolut vodka, ‘X-ray’ made it into the 1995 Design & Art Direction Annual.  As if being part of D&AD wasn’t reward enough, my work was included at the Private View of the 1995 Festival of Excellence Exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery.

When I turned up at the venue, awash with Adland legends, I was beyond excited.

I was pregnant.

Look what I got up to at work in the ’80’s

During the late ’80’sand early ’90’s, I worked at two London advertising agencies, Chetwynd Haddons and The Creative Business. Neither exists today. The fact both employed me is pure coincidence. Back then, working wasn’t work, it was going out to play with your mates, every day and getting paid for it. As one-half of a creative team, I did words (copywriter) and Dick Tyson did pictures (art-director). We turned our ideas into award-winning ads.