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Media Masters - Melanie Blake…



Media Masters with Paul Blanchard welcome to media Masters series of one-to-one interviews with people at the top of the game turned on by Melanie Blake entrepreneur and chief executive of Associates music Top of the Pops working with that's like Destiny's Child all saints and the Spice Girls and as one of the leading music managers has a roster of award-winning artists who have sold more than 100 million records 10 years later many downsize their business to focus on writing first as a columnist for the Sunday People and the Daily Mirror then as a playwright and now as a novelist her first book the thunder girls is a story of glamour and revenge set in the world of pop girl bands and is already in spider play.

Thank you.

Thanks.

Will that start with the success of the first novel thundergirls.

It is a story of glamour and revenge set in the world of pop girl bands while I've certainly done what they say which is they write about what you know.

The funny thing about the thunder god is that although? It's a bestseller.

It's probably the longest running job to get a bestseller ever because it took 20 years to get it out while so xx to remind me and we'll go on his management career and it should be about 30 years and should Emmerdale and won best newcomer, which was quite there.

It kind of little bit like that that I'd written that book in 1999 when I was working at Top of the Pops and I was very well at school at 16 without any qualification, but I was written and had and I loved writing and at my school particularly.

I had a English teacher who hated everything that I wrote and specifically said to me.

Do you write the women like men? What do you mean these women are far too strong? I looked at home, so I really need to get out of here.

I need to get out of here now and the die was cast.

Now three years later.

I wrote the story which is about those for women that had been in a band 30 years ago haven't seen it's over 30 years and now need each other again price of a check-up and I've been inspired to write it because at the same time as working at Top of the Pops I Was freelancing as a journalist untrained but we'll talk about that later.

I was the queen of the black and I've got the here-and-now tour buses and it was hell and I realise that if you're only there for the price of a Jack there was some serious beef coming.

That's what inspired the thunder god so in 1999.

I landed atop literary agent a massive one right now.

I'm typing now but I'm in really ginormous and they were like we did it's amazing and it went out and I was offered tons of money for it straight away and then the feedback came back the women are too old now the rain and thunder girls have not seen each other for 30 years, so they have to.

Between 40 and 64 it work not all the women of the same age ageism evening characters characters immediately immediately so so I was skin living in a totally broke really needed that money to make £100 a week working x pups and freelance journalist never get paid for months.

Maybe maybe was £250 and you wait for that the bears were on you at that time it was wrong, but I knew that 40 and 50 and 60 wasn't old.

I'd seen women in the studios Cher Madonna probably were 4056 because they're now all that now or certainly between 40 and 50 and they weren't old and they still had life and were fabulous and

So either to the agent that you can be young or old but not in the middle yeah, and I know it was wrong so I stayed no I don't want to do it and he said it's a lot of money and I will get me different deal with someone so it got sold again to a massive TV company.

I'm not there name them, but it was and it was massive money and then when it came down to the wire again.

What is the river in them in a lettuce so it went into a cupboard and I didn't think about it for 15 years and then and I then became at Music Manager how much I wasn't when I wrote it and my own career went off in a completely different Lane that I never expected so I've a bit like the thunder god I've having a reunion with myself and where I first started.

Really had done.

I wrote it before I knew it and then and it tells about you referring to the music industry well again.

You couldn't make it up and have loved it.

I wouldn't be so I was a rat in London at the age of seventeen Stevie Nicks with SCI and I'll let you arrived here with about 1500 quid that saved up from like 5 different jobs.

Got myself a room in a shared house and set about trying to conquer media and no qualifications that let's go with nothing.

I don't my work experience in a record shop at 15 kilos always interested in music and I don't know anyone that was going to give me a break.

I don't know any record label there any places.

No just thought I'd just go to add music as in work out what people like and then it'll give me an instant the headmaster at my school said to me your decision to do you record shop is an example of what your life will be like you will never ever do better than this now.

I went on to spend the summer in that record shop.

What made people really want to buy stuff? Why they really cared people that with fanatical whatever that work experience probably went on to make me millions and millions of pounds and I thought it was the biggest insult and joke that was the school but it's set me up for my entire career which was what do the people the public the punters one and I feel everything around that.

I'll probably learnt that in that experience in that shop.

So then when I writing I was trying to get a job and couldn't get one I ended up getting a handing out leaflet job which went on for nearly 2 years.

I was handing out leaflets at train stations and product.

I was so demoralised.

I just thought I'd never going to break in nothing's going to happen.

I was on the verge of giving up and going back to Manchester and I was 19 and there was a reason.

I was on about your own back and I was still at Euston Station handing out free drinks and it was a red drink and we were wearing white and a woman knocked out of my hand and I was covered in it and I looked at her friend and she won't get a real job and I just thought I said I'm done so horrible woman but but maybe that was listening because as I walked back to pine the Conchords at Euston where we were to change my suit outfit the phone and the same agency that sent me to do the job that was really not a very good job Dad have you ever been a camera assistant and I went yes no idea what was absolutely free tyres that yes, they can you get to Elstree Studios yes, they will ok.

So you tomorrow.

Is that ok? I'm going to ask you.

Got train walked all the medol brakes binding walked in thinking no idea what I'm going.

Hope I can get away with their walk past EastEnders that and thought wow this is something really serious just before I say when I come from a really religious family and my dad with a born-again Christian hymns band or popular music and Culture in our house and it wasn't a nightmare and the thing that I love the most was Top of the Pops and he banned me from watching it.

So it was just a sneak around trying to say anyway, I was on Top of the Pops once in the audience and dance in a silly way, just too kind of show that I mean on the right and then when you actually see me this clip on YouTube it doesn't look like I'm being ironic.

It.

Just looks like an idiot dancer dance.

It's horrendous.

Literally looked up and for gas you paint the wrong.

God if someone's listening to me and not you and I've been sent here and I walk through the door.

What year was this at 9 so and I walked through the door and suddenly I was in front of Spice Girls Kylie Minogue Robbie Williams I mean I heard of them as close as we are now is the top of the pops studio looked big on the train, but it's like a lift.

Please like a utility room and it used to be and it have an ABCD set up so a b c and d were on the boxes that I need to find in stage and then they would be an easy for the middle if you were doing a big performance by so you'd be a sign to look after a difference who is presenting that night.

I think it might have been Gail Porter it was a real sort of 90 that was presenting when I was in the floor manager before she came in.

A lot of really bad press to be really horrible to her and the form and we all like a laugh and a joke, but if anyone insults colour is nasty to her.

You'll be let us to leave immediately and that will that people are going to do it wasn't overly precious.

I think he was just protecting your feelings because I've never seen anything like that, but I can tell you that anyway walked into the future and they said this is your camera.

This is what you doing and the caravan up to me anyway.

Let's go and I let him I didn't do anything and I would like I don't know what I'm doing you can't lend you the money when you don't know what you doing here and I don't know anyone right no cables.

Are you supposed to pick them up and follow me around and then that will know when you're up and pick them up and I got a really dirty.

Put the cables down and I went to watch the rehearsal now.

Are you in for the rehearsal rehearsals where it was so all the managers all-purpose nobody was that just the acts.

So you would let you have the most famous at Cineworld in this room during the rehearsal alone right.

So I was watching it and I was thinking some of this stuff.

Doesn't look very good like and then telling them so that Kylie Minogue with a routine in the lights all set up and in the middle of the course.

It was making her face that kind of blue and I have is going to be hard and Westlife with her and they've been on touring maybe a buffet of the touring with a bit more of them in usual and they were insult shirts that go with the wind machine which to anybody with eyes new with not a good combination of that work.

You just need to move some elements around till I watch the rehearsal and I thought so.

I'm just going to tell everyone in his tutor what I think of them and what I think would be useful and could be helpful so I approached him and I told her and she was that thanks so much.

I didn't realise that told Westlife they turned out with someone else.

I forgot how it is and at the end of the day.

I said I buy thanks very much.

See you next week and that began a four-year career at top of pops as a sort of non-specific rolled.

I just talked to people in my house and just you and Mariah Carey wouldn't come down because her management said to carry who was the boss of it at the time you have to clap marine institute of course will come around and see her and that she would know it was like what time is a packet of and leave now because I'm not doing that and I just went upstairs and I waited until there's no one there and I

Do you know that certain that no and order new realise? It wasn't them.

It was the people around them Jennifer Lopez had an Entourage of like 50 people and we told not to look at I went out with you know it's been told that look at you should buy at the manager right there and then lovey lovey incredible and mentally physically grill a special that so it quickly became clear that I had something that these stars light and it was actually common sense which nobody was giving them because people and tell them that so what happens if I struck up a friend by Richard to the lead singer of steps.

She was the only one from Steps used to come into the hassles and watch the other performers rehearse that I was alright so probably.

I was probably doing but I'm sure it together and over the years she would listen to my teeth and I'd go that's a flop that remember Atomic Kitten rent and they hurt like they're on their last chance and they were like really demoralizing and label was about to drop them and they did whole Again know that have the number one that would you believe that and it was I just had a really well.

It was a really big massive hits and I said that that's going to be your first number one.

She did not want to hear that and it was right 7 and after 21 and then she was dropped and just had an instinct and Claire said to me you know you make a brilliant manager as he was going to hire me to be a manager and not even meant to be in here and she was like I would you and I was like yeah.

Yeah anyway.

I quite like Steps as well.

I know it wasn't cool when you sort of a 20-year old lad but

Bands on their own and she said they had two steps managers, there's no way that she was going to be able to go to Melanie Blake here.

It would be brilliant manager for the Waterman they did a bit of gamberi.

What they were they were with the Jive and they had a different team they just did that tragedy and a couple of other bits and some Bananarama stuff that was a reused what about with the work with Pete all the way through Bananarama now was an absolute Ops III top though so she said that to me and then my dad came to an end and I disappeared back into obscurity and she left steps and she went and did something with h and Claire with same management and then after a couple years had a baby and then I was in a bed set again.

I think I was about 24 at this stage and I was like well.

I had 4 years of like a fun.

I didn't make any money but I certainly had a good time and maybe.

Give up and you know I was working for magazines.

I was writing for hello.

I was working for a couple of different ones.

I wasn't making any money.

I was do you know I was broke and then one day one day out of the blue.

I got a phone call and it was her and she said it's me and I knew it was her and she said I'm ready and I should really and she said that when you spell rancher and said I'm sending a cab to pick you up and she's out to get you back in there and I basically created to have a performance which was BBC show called everybody dance now where they sang songs bands, but on their own dancing show the BBC that will never work.

I know that's what they said and I learn to be a manager by going to the corner shop and buying of magazines.

An opening the front page and seam it said editor and the number and literally cold calling them.

That's what we do even better mean, but that was unheard of that literally so that was on the phone to one ringing up going so I represent Claire Richards and we are doing an exclusive.

It was literally coming out of my mouth.

I think I know what I'm saying and we have a freelancer in the office today and I'm just checking is it you that has bought the exquisite into you the first one in 2 years because I can't see it on the paperwork.

I just came out of my mouth.

It was a lie and they never want it and I went well.

I can't confirm you can have it.

All.

I need to know like what your fears.

Cos that I've got confused with therefore.

I said to send me an email with what you say, how much you want a massive never ever always say just send me a maximum offer and by the end of the day.

I had probably originated about £100 worth of deal for her and you get 1% 20 20% Sorry we are you later, but congratulations on both know.

Thank you very much as I like people with and without even though I can do that VAT return on a didn't teach me properly install QuickBooks on your laptop like I've done but how do you make the invoice out here and I literally haven't even thought of a name for the company if I thought about it.

I would have done quite a go-getter and light and feisty and I'm glad I think I might have thought of something pink piranha blonde management or something like that and I just thought it was for a trainer.

That's mad like the Urban trainer and then on the other page it was something like Clinton

I went and urban Associates was born like that and within a year of the time, but then there wasn't anything that was really weird because we had a really like the military Client List another name for the world of change around it but within a year we were the number one Boutique agency and Boutique by meaning found as part of an affiliation we were we were sub-agent has anyone else had a client list of about 12 people turned over here.

I think about 300000 well.

How do you get the other clients? Yes, she was once you've done one you get attention that people stop what you're doing and then basically some people seek you out sometimes you see them so with Claire I went to an event and I bumped into Gaynor Faye who I am who I had met years earlier and we reconnected and she was like what you doing now like.

And literally I find Gaynor hooping with the ginormous version and put her in Dunston eyes and she's such as well, so I'm actually in Telford who are then became imperative for and then literally it was just one after the interval from Eastenders footballers wife at the time, but what we discovered.

It's at the end of that year that I had a broad spectrum of artist that were music presenters and I've created a multimedia agency said that first without and within a year it was just it was so unexpected.

It was not was never intended to do it was never what I plan to do.

I just was really really good at in your grafter like me yeah, well.

Well.

You know you do some amazing things that you do.

And and certainly something that contribute to I'd love to but that in a different word for mean.

I've had to sort of repositioning to go over there, but then it's well.

I sort of fell into but then had failed it writing and had failed as a journalist even though I was working with people and I've got all their job.

I wasn't making any money and I do consider if you know any money that is not a success if you're not earning the money, it's not gonna you're not going to bother any parsnips absolutely very poor background on food bank charity shop clothes free school dinners dirt red nothing Hamilton London I was literally had no money at all same as I forget the Year the special Oyster card unemployed people get where does a picture of you on a you get people's travel to be in because we're search a small minority of the people that are in media.

I certainly know that say.

Intimidator mine in all the years I've been doing this and I've been here 18 years.

So you just told me that story is the first one.

I've had other than mine doesn't even go into my reason was talking about how was because the money was really important to me so I then got on the idea that I wanted to make a lot of money.

So it wasn't that nobody was there anything it's important to say that that was the goal and I basically happened upon a lot of Talent and people that have been forgotten.

So it was the dawn of the new Millennium things were changing Twitter and Facebook were in the way off but Media I did with changing a reality with coming in and it was a different and there was a real surgeon if you've been famous before 2000 and here.

They will kind of like the crossover point.

I think it was 2001.

It was like damn you became famous the different type of them and people saw forgot the previous ones and I just knew having grown up watching television the market not just that but there was a massive market because more this country a pole and reach more people in this country are working class in the army.

Look at this country watch television then Joe more people in this country needs escapism and that means is invested in those stars, so whilst another agent might see a Gillian Taylforth or a Michelle Collins or Claire King type of slightly pasta for tea, so I would just get them we can now I looked at them and when actually women at home.

I've grown up with them what you can get married on TV soap figures in those days for like 25 million.

You'll never get that would be in stable of actresses and Coleen Nolan from The Nolans cos I need with the market and I would go out and get booked deals at work.

Hundreds of thousands of pounds clothing deals worth £100,000 by manipulating the I knew that their market share with their and that no one was no touching it so we went to the cat on the table in the table and with the right project that was lovely, so that everyone said to me who's gonna what he's going to Nolan's perform again and I said Albert had a lot of people want to see them.

You don't have to be cool to be popular, so I argued the case and finally got universal who were amazing and got behind and The Nolans reunion tour went on silent top 2 million at the box office in 24-hours.

Well.

That wasn't there to be happy with them.

They were wrong and then and they were wrong because classist and ages and I was sexist it was three level but other than that.

They're alright they were.

I want make them horrible let you know if you judge someone because they're not cool.

It's cool is ridiculously cool as when you don't need to try and because you don't need to be that is it like the clappers have they got it or you haven't I haven't got it so but like so I was kind of annoyed about that and I felt like because I was a reminder 80 you know coming from the North and coming from the wrong side of tracks and not having any sort so I tried to get a job with other agents and I have done these deals for these gloves because I've met them already and you don't have the parts and each wake me up nobody gave me a job.

Everybody's took the jobs and the commission so I tried to do it the right way and I don't know them but they're all fallen by the wayside those agents all have big moments and I'm still here and I'm still representing at any one time 10 or 12 hours of what you think on TV from BBC writers room.

Everything from Breakfast to drama and I've been and gone and done it being honest and stained and staying true to the vision test but tell them the truth don't tell you know something to be untouched the idle.

I then removed from reality and that's how I got my break at Top of the Pops by being real and telling people because people don't tell the truth so I would then broker a deal with a magazine or newspaper and I would go let's be clear.

This is what they want to know how much do you want to be able to make this work? How to tell a story and the Editors couldn't believe that.

I would be so brutally on it and like Cat and Mouse game of sitting around and hoping that maybe they might say something to talk about this and you want this money for it and it works though.

I realised it was a really massive pivotal thing with the everybody had forgotten that the class.

Titled woman woman's Own Bella and best where at that time still selling two three 400000 copies a week and that is where the main mum's market really was and our clients were very much and I realise we have most of the Loose Women panellist for the time that we could create a sort of HRT Brat Pack and overall menopausal women on the Costa Brava in which meant that the women that were reading and watching them were too and they were thought of their marriage is falling apart or their children were leaving and they were updated in their lives It was relevant to be open so private pop stars and private stars and you people who don't share it worth anything, but these girls were worth a lot, but if your Halloween ok didn't make them but if you want a woman woman's Own they would like this is a big deal.

So and this was the game-changing mid-market classics to me.

What are we know? It has anyone had forgotten them and Coleen Nolan was getting married and I went to ok and hello and they will also give you like five grand and will shove it in the bank over page and I thought no you're on like this woman's wedding is a big deal and it's going to sell a lot of copies so I went to She Studley no longer with her.

She died a couple of years ago terrible.

She was a wonderful woman god Jackie Hatton and she was the editor of Woman Magazine and I went to her and I said you gonna think I'm crazy, but I'm proposing that you do a Coleen Nolan's wedding and the entire front cover to it as a commemorative special and put like 18 pages inside and that is crazy and I'm at work and I want you to pay this much money and I want it to be there and we want to put the price up for the issue is that is so crazy.

I've got to go and try so she went to the board may approve.

Coleen Nolan's wedding with the cover of woman and it sold 186000 copies more than ever done before and she went editor of the year.

So what came next well.

That's a really strong position at that point we were charging 10g so I had the supermodel idea in my head which we don't get out of bed for less than 10 grand and so we went undercover and we go and no one was realising that we were nail in this market where there was all this money and people were going to like a fraction and we were colossal days and turning into this sort of like we reach the audience and like a bubble really so we sort of just mushroomed to I would describe it really as like if it was a snack we would like tea and toast was like everybody has every day.

You know it was it was comforting.

It was nice.

It was it was something.

Other agents were sort of trying to create something fancy or a brioche or something different.

We literally just when everybody has a cup of tea and toast that's just reach that market and we steadily climbed.

I am within 30 hour.

I think flat 3 million and then we hit 4 million and then and then and then we stayed like two and a half and then we turned over 2/2 million every year 4 and 14 in the same genre in the same era of expanding.

I didn't interview and they used it they use the phrase that then went into the Bros documentary was the fact that we made all the money when the screaming stopped and that is when there was the most interest because actually what happens when that stops that's when you get real and you knew that's a really lovely guy with a very very lovely heart and if you capture the Moment of when it over.

Bet they're still there are the oceans want the more than ever because Michael Buble tycoon king of Vegas type thing and then the other half I like people like me that you never did you know there's a few jazz versions of like, when will I be famous and drop the points solutely? I mean you need to have a lot of success that they're very very hard.

I mean that they are both damaged from that era as a lot of pop stars thundergirls which is best to store it was about damaged cells and that brings me to the conclusion of why I moved away from pop stars in the end, cos you'll see that Michael I have 10 years in music then I moved onto drama really and the last 10-years well the combination and the height of my music with The Nolans reunion tour in 2009 and then I stopped music.

Concentrated on everything else because by the very nature of the beast of being a popstar you have to massage a pop stars ego enough in order for them to be a popstar because otherwise you can't go out in front of a live audience and just be you for men and it is exhausting and we work with a few musical artists.

It's just it's it's not their fault because if someone has to believe that they are so special they can entertain 100000 people you can't expect them to come backstage enough to put the kettle on and give you a very unfair to pop stars but lose it because I don't know what to do when that very bad because they Geri Halliwell said a very famous quote and it was she had a very humble Beginnings in bed sounds of yours and that if you've ever read her backstory, but she really wants a grafter she was the one hand Spice Girls and she said a year and didn't even know how to make a cup of tea.

Softer skills Do Anything For Themselves so I did move away from that and I do still find that my most bad memories have come from upstairs.

I've never really had any prickly moments with anyone you wasn't a popstar so you kept doing the same job but you then changed markets in the sense that you did it focused on presenting and drama and then of course I was in the right place at the right time for the birth of what I simply could not have bought my house that and that was Celebrity Big Brother I mean I know Peter bazalgette quite well.

That is a friend of mine.

He obviously brought Big Brother over from the drop that over from and also Deal or No Deal that's right, but I didn't really make any money from his run of it.

I made all the money from Channel 5 run a bit.

So, I only have one contestant in Channel 4 which was Stephanie Beacham I love Stephanie pictures.

Have you done now? She be amazing but I remember Dynasty and she also that was in season 6 of staff at the Next Generation on a single episode companion and Beverly Hills 90210 wasn't in Howards Way as well.

I would know about alright ok.

I'm sure she will let you down you would regret it.

She would kill you so it was the fact that they had never been Stephanie Beacham type in Celebrity Big Brother that's the lower rent celebs so I again changed the market and I went look dead Letters nothing.

All the money and will change the demographic of the show listen to know if it was very much worth are going into the house and she went in while then created what was possibly my most lucrative run when it was Channel 5.

I think I did 11 series and sometimes we had up to 3 and a half that time it was literally like a factory and the only top dollars because we were the stars well.

I kind of stars and at one point I had 3 clients in one day and the collective feels £1000000 which one I'm a 200g in 1-month and that's what you've mentioned earlier the rapper isn't supposed to always go we got terrible things you've had all the money out.

I've got the plans, but you'll see they wouldn't go in if it wasn't the right thing don't bother you could.

And you could come out to nothing because you could ruin your life and career so you're only worth something if what you could damage.

Is is worth that she can't stand absolutely so I just a spider I ran with it took a lot of work to come into a lot of people to do it and you know we won it twice people came like second really had too bad experience didn't come out of it.

Well other than that it was brilliant and and it was just it was silly money.

It was crazy money.

It was never going to be sustainable, but they're ever but it certainly was an amazing life that people who got into that massive.

Don't like people I can't pay my tax bel you be like in Big Brother for you then.

What came next books so at that stage.

I then realised I had forgotten that autobiographies, which I loved were massive and again I change the landscape of that so clean CV13 publishers turned down said he won't.

And the 14th but she said OK will do it, but will give you like 30 grand which is nothing clean wouldn't care about me telling you this so I said look it's not a good thing but I'm going to the serial rights which nobody would doing back then either and I said I know it's going to sell and it did 16 weeks at number one so phone 2000 copies and cereal £100,000 and again and again we sold at eternal twerk videos no number ones and none of those with less than six figures.

I just found money in places that people just were looking like and everywhere.

I went people followed so that suddenly there were other agencies that would ruin PR marketing presenting but we started that off and we are actually was living in America in one stage between Clare hiring me and I saw that in America that it was the multimedia way and I just brought that.

Over here, so I didn't invent it.

I just brought it into the UK and now it is the weather in James Grant Media I don't know what the organisation is called that has changed.

It's a few times, but it was now.

It's is it into telling well, it would ever is is there a big agency but they do it all in house all of them do all in-house but we started that James Grant in particular.

They also offer that accountancy services and everything in house which causes is a double and all the time we worked for a number of business manager Talent that originally had sold 25 million records and only made £30,000 each because it had a terrible contract have been robbed from an S Club 7 one about 100 quid a week for years were well.

That's a totally different story and it because they were manufactured.

The deal I have The Nolans situation was different because there had been a manager and he just found a terrible day out and it meant they literally got like a tenth of a share of a tenth of a tenth of a shower with never forget.

I think there was like 5 or 6 of them at one point so painful that cost I didn't realise that the end of it there was there was no money that she made more money when we represent them in their head are not only did we do that or we did an autobiography which is standard clothing range got a clothing range to sponsor the tour and then we did individual autobiographies and then individual clothing ranges and individual TV special offers two of them into primetime TV so I mean and people laughed at the moment when he wants to see them and The Nolans must have generated 10 million pounds of the business at least what came next.

Page turner of a story what happened what happened that takes me to about no no let's stick with them so I was at heights R32 10 years ago and I had hit the peak and unbeknownst to me Bernie Nolan who I was representing and my mum but had cancer and we're all backstage at The Nolans reunion and unaware that within two years.

They were both be dead and this and you'll be grateful that you'll never have to look after me because I'm so young and it turned out that we never did because the reason she thought and Bernie for Tuesday now to live cos she had a 14-year old daughter.

She'd had a stillborn child should she nearly lost her own child again another day?

We had gone through that that the meal and she did not want to die and I saw death basically and I had the house I had the money and I've never really had a life.

I was so busy.

I was focusing on this and that I suddenly went on my god.

I'm going to die.

I'm going to die and have no control over it and I've got no Legacy of my own like I don't all these things that everybody and that's great, but there's nothing here.

It's got my name on it that I did that for me and I was a massive Jackie Collins than when I was little I used to read books on Amazon my mum's cleaning rounds just turn transport myself away from the smell of brass our she was on her knees scrubbing other people's houses.

We lived in Andover house.

That was really disgusting inside an awful and having to go to other houses that were lovely and gorgeous was just sticking a knife in Newry

Make it worth and in her books.

I noticed that all the women characters came from nothing and clawed their way up to the top.

So I think she inspired me that you could do that because if you look back now and sort of Goudhurst Inn London 17 and and everything that happened happened.

Where did I get the blue from here? Got it from a Jackie Collins book and then I Shirley Conran book and all those Blockbuster novels of the 80s and women thought against the odds and made the top and bring her up because she was the final death in like a three-year period died and just said was already wavering about that.

I wasn't happy that this was all I was going to be known for she died and I was like she was dying as I thought you meant entertained an issue time and she died within 9 days and I just went that's it.

I got it.

I've got to do something for myself so I got.

Reached to a stranger which literally happened like almost every night.

I like to know what it's been to relay a relationship.

We don't do things by halves absolutely not surprising that he went to the TV Choice Awards and I literally met somebody at their wards and within 2-weeks of living together with insects and that was engaged and then like a year and a half they were involved.

It's all very big deal and I thought I've had my career now like I've built with business.

I don't need to run it anymore.

I'm just going to focus on their children and and maybe we'll have children now from them and give them the life that I never had and I decided it wasn't wasn't going to be for me and that was going to be the Legacy the Legacy was going to be that help them have what I didn't haven't you know their own interests you want you want to go to college.

Do you want to do something you know and then that ended and the wedding didn't happen.

Broken heart head because I've never really been in love, so I guess it was like a teenage love because it's so late and late one night Brokenhearted best online there was an auction for Jackie Collins jewellery, and I decided to bed out of nowhere in this next part of the story is probably the most unbelievable but it's all and I was laying in bed at night and I bid on this auction for these 5 pieces and actually wearing two of them right now and there's a power cut in Crouch End and had no idea it or not and I woke up in the morning and the power came back on now.

Got an email that when these are not want you to pay them but I win the bed and they were delivered to me within 24-hours and they put their spending on them wearing right now and this ring and I was with clean on a TV set for a pilot about psychics the next day.

Mention the jury to anyone she didn't know I haven't talked about and this psychic.

I didn't believe in psychics and no believe in anything that said to me.

Can I have a word with you and I looked clean up to me and she went in private and I'm ok that you're wearing tonight.

You belong to really powerful woman and yeah, and she really glad you got it and I want yet and she went any written something and I want yet and you need to get out and give it another go and that night.

I went home pentacles reversed hair and it's sold within a week while true story so this was this was the final is it 1 hours that you now you know a writer and novelist has been telling you I mean what what's the date today now? How do you do you have the Ultimate portfolio career so that that moment that divine intervention somewhere changed my life again.

Just like that that that.

It's really weird so considering I was raised in a in a religious prison really someone's been looking out for me and the people that bring that situation.

I got pretty bad live and I haven't got a great life and I didn't obey the rules so I think it's pretty clear that they got it wrong and I was right and it's not down to Highcroft over in front of the camera and it's weird that now I have a Twitter profile and the following and her and like people write letters to me and influenced by your journey to success.

I've had nothing but positive 18 nothing.

I've never had a single never had one troll about anything.

I would have you bad book reviews but we are my wife gets occasional bad, but with you I don't mind because they said why they didn't like it.

They said I shouldn't have bought this because I don't like this sort of work.

I didn't like what he might does it.

She looks other like you know best-selling books and

Hunters about reviews for those as well.

It's just the nature of being up.

Are you going to get money minis? Please? Everyone all the time but yeah, you can rationalize it, but it's still a bit as well because they're really weird Minds mine is a bit like my whole polarizing 5-star reviews or one-sided view which is a little bit so much.

I've read it 10 times.

I want a hate it should never ever read in my life.

Been like that people.

Have you got me all day didn't and and I'm fine I reconciled with that that that that that so now we have a play that are sold out and we've already been offered a West End transfer which is life-changing that will make me a West End producer that doesn't have a GCSE and sort of backwards, so I'm now in a position of power where I'm dealing with international rights for projects that I own myself with dealing with international companies big ones.

What Disney but Disney sized so that would be a comparative and I learnt very early from when I was doing my deals for the clients to hold back on as many rights as I could someone else told my novel I held onto dramatic rights haven't the playwrights and the reason I wanted to write a play if there's so many other actors when they came off soaps would find that they were offered touring shows that just won't very good.

I bet I can do better than that so I did and have and it's sold out to enjoy life not running the business and scaling and making doing the deal I still do I do everything so I am still wearing every.

Hat you haven't actually take the hat off but you just put lots of the created more work for the people that I represent so what have actually done is have defied the next era, and now I've hired women on stage that are in their 50s and 60s that would absolutely not get hired by April

Anna created to show for them to pair and it's sold out and every promoter that we went to first cos I thought let's see if somebody else wants to put it on first said nobody wants to see this women so it's all over again.

We came back to where which was ages them classism sexism and yet again.

We've got the train because now we have a sell-out show with for women over 50 working class that they said no one wanted to say what's the next event on America so I tend to go to America to write which is what I do because I had to talk in a different time zone for it and I've been offered quite a big deal with an American publisher and an American network and so probably will be spending more time now won't change what I'm doing a wee already reduce the Client List early when I did all this so I'm now really representing people that if they act as they can be in my Shadows

And if they're presented therein shows that we're already working on so we very rarely take people on now and we've got just about the right size Client List that mean pretty much.

Have you put on EastEnders Coronation Street Emmerdale however, we've got them.

She put on this women this morning Lorraine we got someone in there, so we have a little world that works for us, but now it's about making sure that they stay happy and that they get focus on that they get attention because it's not about me this error if I'd had a Melanie Blake on the books.

I would never done any of it myself.

I just didn't have one I just happened to be her.

I think we can kind of guessed that the answer to this innocence, but I like you're taking his what advice.

Would you give to someone you know who's listening to his hugely inspired was just starting out on their career never ever accept anybody else's opinion on what you think about what you know if you know it.

You know it and you can always get it better and change it you can get it but if you have an Instinct that you.

You probably are because if I listen to anybody I wouldn't have got anything done and I would never have got anything away and everything I ever heard was no no no no no no won't work every wants it and when I stopped listening.

I start again.

I will metre one for many years and they got a really good culture and one of the things that they have in the is that it takes two people to say no to any idea at all.

So that anyone can just say no to something there has to be second person and they said the tons of ideas have come out of that just because it's there ruling their culture that one person can't say no to anything I would say the biggest advice that I could anybody there isn't yet where we are which is inside the media bubble is the way in now is that there is no excuse not to get in like when I started to do a fan club have to write letters to I mean now.

You can tweet a celebrity Direct Simon Cowell hired.

Someone a couple years back.

Derail the number one campaign because it was so good that they actually had that we did it from his bedroom.

I think in Hull and nearly got me anyway.

You know anybody that says I can't crack.

It is not trying hard enough because I see blogger certainly blogger podcasts.

I'm social media is like there are people who literally have created entire platforms themselves then get picked up by bigger platforms.

So if you want to do it you just do it if you want to write you write if you broadcast broadcast it's like even if you just broadcasting to let a few people at first sight seeing if you're good word will get around like there is there is never been more opportunity ever and the walls of come down more than ever come down, but my business to remain the same because they Prejudice and the age of them Anna classicism and working class.

Is still intact massively so the my work will never be done because we fight that everyday and women don't have an expiration date on them and a lot of men in power believe that they do an incredibly inspirational conversation and huge admirer of what you've achieved.

Thank you ever so much for your time.

I've absolutely love being on and I hope that anything that I said that is anyone wants to achieve something if they told they can't have it is useful association with big things Media


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