Superstar scribe Scarlett, 8, releases bedtime book

8-year-old Scarlett Sparkes with the book she has written titled The Monster That Lurked Inside Her

8-year-old Scarlett Sparkes with the book she has written titled The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head. - Credit: Danielle Booden

A little girl who used to be scared of tucking down at night has transformed her fears into a dream come true. 

Scarlett Sparkes from Norwich has published her debut book 'The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head' inspired by her own bedtime worries. 

The eight-year-old author has penned the story of a young girl whose fears get the better of her and she finds herself seeing them come to life.

Anna Sparkes, illustrator, and 8-year-old Scarlett Sparkes, author of The Monster That Lurked Inside

Anna Sparkes, illustrator, and 8-year-old Scarlett Sparkes, author of The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head. - Credit: Danielle Booden

But thankfully the character's family helps to reassure her and show her that the scariest thing at bedtime can be your own imagination.

Both Scarlett and her mum have had to work to overcome anxiety, especially at bedtime. 


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And the pair had always had the ambition of writing a book so during lockdown 2020, they got to work. 

The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head written by Scarlett Sparkes and illustrated by Anna Sparkes.

The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head written by Scarlett Sparkes and illustrated by Anna Sparkes. - Credit: Danielle Booden

"The title, words and plot all came from Scarlett,’" Anna Sparkes, Scarlett's mum explained.

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"I asked her some questions to help guide her but ultimately, she's born a storyteller.

"She’s been putting on dramatic shows in the living room since she was small, it was only a matter of time before she finished her first book," she added. 

8-year-old Scarlett Sparkes with the book she has written titled The Monster That Lurked Inside Her

8-year-old Scarlett Sparkes with the book she has written titled The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head. - Credit: Danielle Booden

Scarlett said: "The ideas for my books come to me at the worst possible times. It might be two o’clock in the morning when I think of what to write."

Luckily, taking her own advice from the story, Scarlett is able to quickly fall back asleep.

The pair looked at many possible publishing routes but chose to self publish. 

Anna, though not an artist, even took on the challenge of illustrating the book herself. 

They hope to inspire others to try creative mediums that they may not have thought about before such as writing, storytelling and art to help ease anxiety.

But Scarlett has many aspirations and ambitions and is now on to the next.

"Next, I want to be a good singer and dancer," she said. 

Anna Sparkes, illustrator, and 8-year-old Scarlett Sparkes, author of The Monster That Lurked Inside

Anna Sparkes, illustrator, and 8-year-old Scarlett Sparkes, author of The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head. - Credit: Danielle Booden

She added: "I’m proud that we finished the book, I didn’t think getting it finished was possible."

The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head written by Scarlett Sparkes and illustrated by Anna Sparkes.

The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head written by Scarlett Sparkes and illustrated by Anna Sparkes. - Credit: Danielle Booden

They are expected to release their second book ‘I’d Rather Be a Rock Than a Flower’ later in the year. 

The Monster That Lurked Inside Her Head is available to buy on Amazon.

  • Could Scarlett be just as successful as these child prodigies?  

Scarlett has a bright future ahead of her – and she’s in good company when it comes to talent which started flourishing early.  

These include:  

Mozart 

Mozart started playing the harpsichord at four years old and composing simple music by the time he was five.  

By the time he was seven he was already going on tour.  

Stevie Wonder 

At aged 12 Stevie Wonder started recording music.  

Under the name Little Stevie Wonder he also began performing.  

By his 21st birthday he had written or cowritten more than a dozen hit songs. 

Abhijita Gupta 

Abhijita just pipped Scarlett to the post having being recognised by the International Book of Records aged seven. 

At that age she was also named Grandmaster of Writing by the by the Asia Book of Records for her poetry.  


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