One poem at a time: An Interview with Bella Coronel

Bella Coronel

Bella Coronel is a writer based in General Santos City. She is known as a poet who writes about heartaches and hopeful beginnings. In-between her day job, she weaves words into prose and poetry. And on most days, she does administrative tasks in a tech company.

Walks, yoga, and traveling keeps her active and inspired. She dreams of making her mark, one poem at a time.

In an interview, she shares about her writing inspiration and poetry books - Chasing Dandelions and Caffeinated Daydreams.

Yadu Karu: When did you realize that you wanted to write?

Bella Coronel: I've always been a lover of books and literature. Because of that, I've read quite a few books and eventually discovered my passion for writing. When I was in high school, I joined the school publication although I wasn’t really excelling in any area during that time. I found myself indulging into writing in college as I became the editor-in-chief of our official student publication.

But my poetry writing journey definitely began when I went through a heartbreak and eventually wrote poems on Wattpad as I needed an outlet for all my unspoken thoughts.

YK: Is this something that you dreamed about? Or is this just an unexpected moment of your life?

BC: It was part of my bucket list to publish even one book. I guess I've always dreamed about writing a book. And I'd say, I am really blessed because God gave me the right people to help me out. I won’t be the Bella Coronel that I am now if not because of the people who believed that my words are meant to be read and to be shared all over the world.

YK: You started writing on Wattpad. Can you share with us your writing experience on the platform?

BC: It was around 2014 that I started writing poems on Wattpad. It was an on and off journey. I only went back in 2020 when I became unemployed because of the pandemic. I even joined writing contests and somehow won. I wasn't really active for quite some time there. But when I was there, I met a lot of great authors. It is the platform that molded me into becoming the Bella Coronel that you know now.

Bella Coronel

YK: Your first book Chasing Dandelions was published in the midst of the pandemic. What motivated you to release this book?

BC: My motivation was to finally pursue a dream I've kept on hold for so long. I didn't actually think about what’s next after publishing my first book.

But with the success that Chasing Dandelions is gaining now, I must say, God is full of surprises. My publisher said it's a blockbuster at the Manila International Book Fair 2022 that some visitors were not able to purchase a copy anymore. It was also nominated in the Filipino Reader’s Choice Award 2022 and was shortlisted. Although the book didn’t make it to the Top 3 finalists, it ranked 8th in the official tally. And receiving good reviews since its release in November 2021, it has been tagged as a top-rated product at one of the biggest online selling platforms in the Philippines.

YK: Part of being a writer is reading other works. What works have influenced your writing?

BC: I've been a fan of Lang Leav and Michael Faudet when it comes to poetry books, while I've always loved the works of Paulo Coelho which made me believe that dreams do come true. I could say they are my influences in my journey as an author.

At present, I’ve collected works by the Amazon Best Selling Author Michelle Ayon Navajas, and have read works by Indie Authors from the Philippines like Starry Night by Juana Garcia, Unsent Letters, Unspoken Words by Jianna Marie Allison, Your Universe by Jessa Erandio among others who I’ve also became acquainted with, in an online community of authors.

YK: How do you manage your day job and writing?

BC: It's not easy but it’s manageable. I just needed to find balance in my personal, professional and writing life. I have this compartmentalized system that I tend to practice so I don't get exhausted. I make sure my professional life and writing journey won't invade my personal life. I am a very private person and I tend to keep it that way. I have social media just meant for BELLA CORONEL and her books.

I normally write at night or during the weekends. And when I update my social media, I usually do it before I start my day at work. It’s hard to maintain but since it’s my passion, I guess it doesn’t tire me out.

Bella Coronel

YK: Tell us about your second book Caffeinated Daydreams. What is your inspiration behind it?

BC: Caffeinated Daydreams was created because of a certain coffee shop in General Santos that helped me in my writing journey. Coffee by George and its owner, Sir George, has supported Bella Coronel in many ways and has offered me a safe platform to feature my poems.

Caffeinated Daydreams is the book that challenged me since I tried writing prose and poems that expressed the happiness of being in love. As I am already branded as a poet who pens poetry about sorrows and heartbreaks, it was indeed something I created out of my comfort zone.

YK: How do you incorporate your sense of place and identity to your writing?

BC: I believe my sense of identity in my writing has improved over the years and I can confidently say that I have started to find my identity and refined my writing style. Bella Coronel had gained the hallmark as the voice of many broken hearts. I have gained a lot of reviews that my works involve a lot of pain and heartache. Although I always want to challenge myself and try to write poetry on various themes. My readers can expect that I will keep surpassing myself as an author.

Bella Coronel

YK: In what way do you help promote local literature?

BC: I may have been using the English language to write poems, but because my poems are written in a way that easily convey what I wanted to express and put my thoughts into words that are universally relatable to almost every person, I say, in that way, I can promote local literature. And not just that, I also wanted to promote reading to the new generation. I want them to love reading poetry not just because it’s a short read, but because it can make them feel that they are not alone in what they’re going through.

YK: So far, what’s the best advice you have received from a fellow writer?

BC: The best advice I have received from a fellow writer was to progress and try other subject matters. Miss Michelle Ayon Navajas told me that readers will appreciate my versatility as a writer if I attempt to also create poetry on different concepts that are not my usual topics. She said that I may be able to reach more people who, even may not be fans of poetry, may love to read poems because of how we channel our feelings through our words.

Bella Coronel

YK: What's your future writing plan?

BC: I haven’t really thought about what my future with regards to my writing path will be. For now, I enjoy sharing some pieces from my books and growing my readership. I am fully aware that I am still growing as an author and as a brand. Even so, all of my books are available for sale on a number of platforms worldwide and in several avenues. They’ve also received good rates and positive reviews. Although I know my numbers and reach need more time, I am working really hard to improve my visibility and readership. Rest assured, that my readers can expect more works from Bella Coronel. As of the moment, I am finalizing my manuscript for my next book.



You can order her books in these links:

Chasing Dandelions –
Caffeinated Daydreams –

They are also available on Lazada and Shopee