Shay Mitchell may be best known for her role on the ABC Family hit series "Pretty Little Liars," but the 28-year-old actress certainly has a multi-faceted career as a lifestyle expert, author and fitness apparel designer.
Recently, she's most been most excited about her debut novel "Bliss," which she co-wrote alongside her bestie Michaela Blaney. The book tells the world of BFFs Sophia, Demi and Leandra as they navigate their early 20s.
For the book, due out Oct. 6, Mitchell and Blaney (pals from growing up in Vancouver) say they just wrote down things they've experienced, then turned it into a fictional story.
"We thought this would be a really good story. It's an exaggeration at some bits but a lot of it rings true for both of us. It was a really fun thing to do. I'm excited and nervous and feeling a little vulnerable because it's my story," Mitchell admits to CBS News.
Mitchell, 28, has also been spending time filming more episodes of ABC Family's hit show, "Pretty Little Liars."
"It's going great ... It's been really, really fun," she said.
When she's not acting and writing books, or producing videos for her growing YouTube channel, Mitchell says she loves to host events, recently teaming with Stella Artois to toast "Bon Voyage to Summer" aboard a sailboat in New York City as part of its Host Beautifully initiative.
Read on for more on Mitchell's book, "Pretty Little Liars" and some beauty and hosting tips.
On why she wanted to write a novel: "I've always been an avid book reader, everything from 'Sweet Valley High' to Jackie Collins and Danielle Steel. And I was finding that in my mid-20s that I couldn't find a book that was age-appropriate for what I was going through. It was either a little bit older-skewed -- about women going through a divorce, or a little bit younger."
On her No. 1 beauty tip: "Exfoliating. Especially with the changing seasons. I notice it with my skin going from New York to LA. Exfoliating is such a great thing especially before applying makeup so you don't have dry skin. I also do a lot of face masks whenever I have time."
On her sense of style: "I kind of incorporate everything. I don't really follow any rules ... Living in LA, I continue to wear dresses and maybe change up my routine by doing a darker lip or changing accessories. When I come to New York or somewhere like that, I do a lot of layering."
On her workout routine: "Boxing. It's always boxing. It's a great workout. It takes a lot of focus when you're in the ring. I can't think about anything else. It's hard for me because most of the time I have 50 things going on in my head, but with boxing I can only focus on that one thing. Otherwise I might get knocked out!
On her best hosting tips: "It's all about setting the environment. It could be as simple as lighting a bunch of candles and having that set the tone. Or having a great playlist that's constantly changing, or leaving them with a gift to take home from the party -- something tangible that they can use when they go home that reminds them of the good times they had. It's about ambiance, good people, conversation and the memories that you take away from that."
On going out vs. staying at home: "I'm more of a homebody. I'd rather have people come over than me have to go somewhere else. It's fun. I think potlucks are great. I don't want to be in the kitchen for eight hours. Let's be honest, that's not how I have fun. Everyone can bring something different [with a potluck]. It's a conversation starter."
On starring in upcoming movie "Mother's Day": "It was so fun. I've always been a huge fan of [director] Garry Marshall and obviously getting to work opposite Jennifer Aniston was amazing. She was so wonderful to work with ... It's a really good movie. Everybody can relate to it. It's going to be one of those movies that you can play every year, watch with your mom ... I feel so lucky to work with such a great cast. It's a dream come true ... I play Tina. And Jennifer Aniston's character, Sandy, is the new stepmom. My husband is Timothy Olyphant, which isn't hard. In the beginning Jen's character didn't know how she was going to take to me ... It's about the complicated situations you have with being a stepmom."
Onfinding out about "A" reveal on "Pretty Little Liars": "I didn't know ahead of time. The other girls did. I wanted to find out in the table read. It was fun to play that out and hear all the fans' reactions."
On new season of "Pretty Little Liars": "All the girls kind of go their own separate ways for five years and when they come back, they come back to Rosewood. I think that's what the big mystery is about -- what is it that's bringing all these girls back?"
On how long "Pretty Little Liars" will stay on the air: "I honestly don't know -- until we're the 'Golden Girls?' I'm having so much fun and it's a great journey that all of us get to be on."