I share my 7-year-old daughter’s wardrobe, says anorexic mum…

Real-life story of anorexia appears in CLOSER, THE DAILY MAIL, DAILY MIRROR, THE SUN and DAILY STAR.

Closer magazine - real life stories

Closer magazine

Rebecca Jones contacted me via my website Featureworld with her quirky story about how because she is anorexic she shares her seven-year-old daughter Maisy’s clothes.

When Maisy asks for a cake, her mum Rebecca doesn’t refuse. As an anorexic, Rebecca worries if she denies her daughter any food at all, she too might develop the eating disorder. This means she worries Maisy is now slightly overweight – but Rebecca would rather have her daughter that way than as she is.

And Rebecca knows only too well how dangerous anorexia can be. Just nine months ago she had to be rushed into hospital – she had starved herself so much her heart was affected. A lack of nutrients had made her heart beat terrifyingly fast. It left her with a damaged heart – and she knows she must eat better if she is to avoid this happening again. Next time, and already with a damaged heart, it could be fatal.

However, Rebecca – whose 5ft 1″ height, dress size 4 and weight of just five stones (this has earned her the nickname ‘Pixie’) finds it impossible to eat properly. She is still anorexic – she consumes a strict 900 calories a day to maintain her body as tiny as it is and ensures she does not exceed 4 grams of fat. Her diet is also liquid because she has difficulty digesting solid food.

Rebecca, 27, who ironically works as a medical secretary, became anorexic in her early teens after she tried to diet. By the time she was 17 she was seriously ill – but managed to maintain from the outside an ordinary life. She went to university and met a man. Because her periods stopped at the age of 17 and she hadn’t had any for years, she didn’t realise she could get pregnant. In fact it was only when one day lying in bed she felt something move in her stomach that she realised she could be pregnant – she rushed to the doctors to find by then she was 7 months. However, as she was anorexic throughout her pregnancy she was still wearing a size six dress.

Fortunately baby Maisy was healthy but when her daughter was small, Rebecca’s relationship with her partner broke up and she is now a single mum.

She is desperate that Maisy doesn’t follow in her footsteps. Maisy asks her mummy why she doesn’t eat and she explains that mummy isn’t well. But she realises that her worries about Maisy following in her footsteps is also a problem. She lets Maisy eat whatever she wants – so chocolate and cup cake treats – aren’t forbidden.

Rebecca is currently on the local NHS waiting list for psychiatric help for her anorexia. She is desperate to get better as she knows another situation such as ending up again in hospital could be fatal. That is her deepest fear – that her anorexia could get the better of her and leave Maisy motherless.

As well as a deal with Closer magazine, with Rebecca’s consent her story was also placed in further deals with a number of national newspapers.

Do you have a story you would like to see in multiple deals – maybe even sold worldwide? For specialist help in selling your story contact me here: Sell My Story


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I met my husband on my hen night…

Story sold in multi deal today – in THE DAILY MIRROR and BELLA magazine. Sell story to the Daily Mirror

When Catherine Kurn went out on her hen night, she had no idea she was to meet her soulmate. The journalist had been dating fiance Keith for years and she was looking forward to getting married the following week.

But then on the nightclub dance floor she bumped into Kristian and there was an immediate attraction between the two of them. They chatted and Catherine even went back to Kristian’s nearby flat for a coffee – but although nothing happened, she couldn’t get him out of her mind.

The next day she woke up thinking of Kristian but despite this, she went ahead with her wedding. After all, how could she cancel marrying a man she’d been with for years for someone she’d only just met for a few hours one night?

However, even on honeymoon in Barbados she still couldn’t stop thinking about Kristian and when she came home the reality of married life with Keith didn’t live up to her expectations. The pair often found themselves bickering.

It was after one row that Catherine decided to ring Kristian. She left a message asking if he wanted to meet her the next day in a nearby cafe. She didn’t honestly think Kristian would turn up – but she was wrong. And when she saw him, once again her heart melted. Catherine Kurn in Bella mag It was to be the beginning of an extraordinary relationship that lasted the next five years. For a long time the pair just emailed – Catherine wanted to make a proper go of her marriage. And occasionally they would bump into one another at a nightclub – then they’d always realise how strong he attraction was between them but because Catherine was married, never did anything.

Yet when Kristian eventually met someone else, it was like a knife going through Catherine and the pair hardly met. By now she and Keith had separated.

But true love did win through in the end. Kristian also found he could not get over his attraction to Catherine. It was simply too strong to deny and in the end he finished his relationship with his girlfriend. Finally he and Catherine could get together properly.

In April 2009 they married – but both of them often find themselves recounting the somewhat bizarre way they met – on Catherine’s hen night…

Did you meet your partner in an amazing way? Did love simmer beneath the surface for the two of you for years until you finally got together? Wonderful love stories are always particularly sought after for women’s magazine and national newspapers. See if your story is one I could sell for you by dropping me an email here.


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Should I have a boob job to reduce my 32JJ chest …?

Jeanette Leach and her husband Steve appeared in the DAILY MIRROR newspaper yesterday to discuss their real-life dilemma…

Daily Mirror story

Jeanette and Steve in the Daily Mirror

Mum of two Jeanette wants to have an operation to reduce her 32JJ boobs. But husband Steve loves her as she is…

She says:

* My boobs cause me backache and are uncomfortable.
* Finding clothes to fit is a nightmare – and I can’t even wear a T shirt because I can look indecent.
* I’m fed up of men talking to my chest all the time.
* I hate the ugly bras – I would love to be able to go without.
* I get too much attention and feel top heavy.

He says:

* Jen has a fantastic figure. Men call me a lucky guy and many women would pay for a figure like that.
* Jen’s boobs define her. She’s always been known as ‘Jen Big Boobs’ – she has a big bubbly personality to match. I worry she might lose some of her personality.
* The operation is costly and it is major surgery which is not without risks. I’ve read some awful stories. What if something goes terribly wrong?
* Jen is happy with our two sons but I would love us to have another baby – perhaps a little girl – and I know she won’t want another if she has this op.
* Jen will miss all the attention her boobs get her. She will blend in with everyone else and I think she might ultimately regret it.

Jen says: “Steve and I were delighted with the story in the Daily Mirror – I couldn’t believe how big it was when we opened the paper – but we were thrilled with the write up and the photos. However, it hasn’t helped us decide what I should do!”

At Featureworld HQ a quick poll revealed unsurprisingly perhaps that the women think Jeanette should go ahead – but the men think she should stay as she is.

What do you think? Do leave your comments and suggestion and if you’ve had a boob job, your experience would be great.

Do you and your husband or partner disagree over an issue? Let me know as it could be a saleable story and earn you some money! Email me here: Sell My Story


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The day Featureworld changed our lives and that of many others…


When in March this year I placed Natalie Balmond’s story in the DAILY MAIL newspaper about how she cooked up an eczema cream cure for her daughter Lula in her kitchen, I did warn Natalie she could be inundated with orders.

Pure Potions

Natalie and Lula cook up the eczema cream cure

But even I did not foresee just how her story would take off. Within a day of the story appearing in the national newspaper, she was swamped with requests. And the latest news from Pure Potions is that incredibly this one article attracted two years’ worth of business within three weeks. And the company went from a two-person team to a 30-person workforce. Turnover has gone from £80K to £450K – and is still growing – as orders still flood in for Natalie’s cream from all over the world… Added to this the company has since won several awards, the most recent of which are the East Sussex Women in Business Awards, one for Innovation of the Year and one for Overall Business of the Year. Natalie has also been nominated Woman of the Year 2011.

A spokesperson for Pure Potions told me this week: “As you can see since your article in the Daily Mail things have seriously taken off. That article literally changed our lives and that of many thousands of others who before that feature didn’t know this cream existed. Thank you so much for making this happen for us, it has literally changed the face of our business.”

Following the article in the Daily Mail, I arranged for Natalie and Lula to go on ITV’s Daybreak with Dr Hillary Jones and they have since had a steady stream of publicity.

Read more about their journey here and to go to the Pure Potions website, click on the kitchen photo above!

Are you a business person who is finding it hard to gain publicity? Do you have a fledgling idea to publicise? You don’t need to go to Dragon’s Den! Simply email me your story here: Sell My Story!


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Husband gambled away our home and our marriage…


Featureworld gained a double deal this week for one couple with a double page in the DAILY MIRROR newspaper and BELLA magazine.

Daily Mirror story

The Shelton family's story appears in the Daily Mirror ...

Steve Shelton emailed me through the Sell My Story contact form because he wanted to raise the issue of gambling by telling his real-life story.
From the age of 19, Steve had enjoyed a flutter on the horses, the football and later roulette. Throughout his twenties he’d had a few times when he’d let his gambling get the better of him. But when he met Michelle he believed he had his gambling habit under control. And in fact, although she knew he did gamble, she believed it was just a few pounds while out with his mates at the weekend.
In fact, it was more than that – something for a long time Steve, who worked in recruitment, even denied to himself. Although Steve made little bets, just a few pounds at a time, they really added up and it wasn’t very long before Michelle began to notice they were overdrawn and also money went missing in the house. Despite this Michelle believed Steve when he said he wouldn’t gamble. The couple married and have two adorable children. Life should have been perfect. But unbeknown to Michelle Steve was continuing to gamble and finding other ways to raise the cash. He raided the children’s money boxes and cancelled their insurance policies.
The crunch came when he was made redundant. The children were small but Michelle went back to work and as their mortgage was covered by loss of job insurance, at least she was reassured that would be paid for a year.

Bella magazine story

... and also goes over two pages in Bella magazine.

But when a pipe burst in their home, she found out Steve had not only cancelled the insurance policy but had also gambled payments meant for the mortgage.
Shockingly he’d also run up £50K in debt and they were made bankrupt, losing their home. Michelle tried to forgive Steve – who said he would get counselling – but when she discovered he’d been gambling again, she decided to leave. She has now filed for divorce.
Steve and I discussed telling his story with Michelle – it felt only right that the whole family should be involved. Both Michelle and Steve told their stories in diaries in the Daily Mirror while for the women’s magazine, the story was told from Michelle’s point of view.

Steve, who is now in counselling with Gamblers Anonymous and who has stopped gambling, said: “I wanted to raise the whole issue of gambling – I only hope my story will help others seek help before it’s too late.”

Michelle said: “As soon as I got the paper and magazine I could see it was written exactly as it had been read back to me. Doing this has brought closure to what was a terrible time.”

Meanwhile, Gamcare, a charity that helps families affected by gambling, has contacted me to say they were pleased to see this issue raised. They add anyone can contact them in complete confidence. Contact Gamcare here: Gamcare help.

If you have an issue you would like to see raised in a newspaper and magazine, please contact me directly for a confidential chat: My Story


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Could you be in a feature?


At Featureworld I am always searching for new stories to put up to editors of national newspapers, women’s magazines and TV.

Sell your story through Featureworld

Do you have a story to sell?

But what I am searching for varies from time to time – depending on the time of year and what is in the news. Have a look here to see if you can help with one of these stories I have been asked for over the past few days…

* Jilted brides and grooms. Following soapstar Jessie Wallace’s wedding that never was, I am searching for anyone who has a similar story. Perhaps their partner cancelled their wedding on the day or just days before the ceremony. It might have been a devastating experience but the bonus is jilted brides or grooms can always sell their story…
* Post-holiday stories – love rats from holiday, holiday romance stories, nightmare holiday stories from this year’s holiday.
* Christmas stories – yes it might only be September but incredibly I sold a story for Christmas to a magazine at the beginning of August – and many mags are already sorting out their seasonal pages.
* X-Factor stories – anything involving this popular show is sought after by showbiz on newspapers – and in fact although it is only the beginning of this series, I already placed one X Factor story in the Daily Star last week. Now I am being asked for more…
* Weight loss stories with great photos and an inspirational story behind them.

* A number of TV production companies have contacted me over the past week searching for people to star in reality TV shows. To browse the shows currently casting for new talent, click here: Get me on TV

To see more ‘asks’ from magazines and newspapers click here: Stories wanted

To find out more about the process of selling your story click here: How it works

And if you want to sell your story then contact me here: Sell My Story


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GP misdiagnosed my husband and he died …


Isabelle Wingrove’s story appeared in THE SUN newspaper yesterday.

Selling story to The Sun newspaper

Isabelle's emotional story appeared in The Sun newspaper.

Isabelle Wingrove and her two sons have been through a nightmare. When husband Jeff collapsed with a terrible headache, she rang her GP for advice. She was put through to an out of hours service and when, as Jeff’s condition worsened, she begged the GP she spoke to there to come out and visit, she refused.
Instead she diagnosed harmless vertigo. Over the next 24 hours Jeff’s condition got much worse – but the GP, Dr Francisca Ogunbiyi, simply said if Isabelle was worried, she should bring Jeff to hospital herself. Isabelle also called an ambulance but they also diagnosed vertigo.
The following day Isabelle and her youngest son discovered Jeff virtually unconscious. He was then rushed to hospital but it was too late and he died. In fact, he’d had a stroke and doctors told Isabelle if he’d been treated earlier, he would have survived.
Isabelle’s shocking story made headlines in many national newspapers. She has since been awarded a sum of money for negligence. But although the GP was given a warning by the General Medical Council, she was not barred from practice.
Isabelle still grieves for the loss of Jeff, whom she describes as her soulmate – but she was comforted by the fact Jeff’s death went to save the lives of five other people. This was because, as she faced switching off Jeff’s life support, she made the decision to donate his organs.

However, Isabelle says: “Even now I can’t forgive the doctor for what she did. If she had bothered to come out and see Jeff , he would still be alive today.”

Have you made the headlines but want to tell your story again? If so do contact me here: Sell a story to the press.


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