Entertainment

Guilty Women author Mel Blake spills on ‘mega bitch actress and vile TV bosses’


She’s the showbiz agent turned best-selling author who, after decades of representing some of the most famous faces on TV, became a star last year with her novel Ruthless Women.

Fans of Notebook columnist Melanie Blake have been begging for more – and now she has answered their prayers.

We spoke to the 45-year-old ahead of the publication of Guilty Women, a book predicted to be even bigger than her last.

She revealed that being thrust into the spotlight after so long working in the background was not all plain sailing…

Hi, Mel. Congratulations on becoming our cover star for the second time. Now it’s your turn in the spotlight, is this what you always wanted?



Mel is a celebrity agent turned successful author

“Truthfully, it never was. As an agent, I secretly wanted to write and the dream was one day I’d be successful at it.

“I feel very lucky that dream has come true. But even after so many years organising the sorts of shoots and interviews I now have to do myself to promote the books, I never understood what it felt like to be so exposed.”

What do you mean?

“As an agent, I kept clients out of trouble with advice on how to conduct their public profiles. But with my own, there’s just me and I haven’t always practised what I’ve preached!”

We guess you’re referring to your infamous Nadia Sawalha Twitter spat when you called her a “nasty witch”?

“Absolutely. I regret that…”

Why?

“It became so much bigger than it should have been. If I could go back, I’d never have posted it.”



Mel’s second book is expected to be even bigger than her first

So what made you do it?

“I don’t want to give this any more oxygen other than to clarify, as far as I’m concerned, there is no feud.

“I looked after her for about a decade and, professionally, we were a brilliant partnership. I’m sure she’d still say the same.

“The issue was the boundary blurred between client and friend. Something happened that was personal and I should have kept private. I was the first to advise clients never to tweet anything they might regret. It’s all been long since sorted out.”

Are you friends with most of your former clients and how did they feel about you stepping into their arena?

“I must have represented 50 of the most famous women in the UK and I’m still close friends with 48.

“I represented Claire Richards nearly 10 years and we Instagram nearly every day, same with Saira Khan, Danniella Westbrook and Sherrie Hewson. I speak to Claire King, Beverley Callard and Coleen Nolan regularly, too. And they are all thrilled for me.

“The confusion between the books and my clients is a lot of characters are based on experiences they may have witnessed with other actresses who were mega-bitches.

“I dealt with executives vile enough to draw inspiration from, too. It’s a bigger landscape to have created characters from, rather than just the stable of actresses I looked after.”



Melanie with one of her former clients, Claire King



She also represented Corrie star Bev Callard

Why do you think people love your books?

“Maybe because it’s escapism. We live in terrible times – war, Covid, the economy… I write about glitzy, glamorous women in gorgeous locations but behaving incredibly badly!

“Reader reviews call my books a roller-coaster ride and that’s the biggest compliment as I want to take them on a journey to forget how miserable things are!

“Guilty is darker than Ruthless and it doesn’t matter if you haven’t read the first book – you can read this one standalone. It’s more of a sexy crime thriller. Be warned, it’s not for the faint-hearted!”

We’ve got to ask about the way your column ended. Have you heard from your ex-fiancé again and are you dating?

“I have indeed heard from him. He got married in the end and is claiming to still be desperate to get back together. But I’m over him.

“I know the fact I’m in the public eye now drives him crazy, so that’s quite satisfying [laughs]. The best revenge on anyone who’s hurt you or doesn’t want you to do well is to attain success and happiness – and I’ve done both.”

So, are you seeing anyone?

“I’m not seeing anyone right now as I’m so busy with the promotion for Guilty Women and then there’ll be a third book.

“I’d like to think that after two years of being locked down alone at Christmas, this year I may end up spending it with someone special. But I’m sorry to disappoint, I won’t be writing about it because I need to start having a private life again.

“With the books soon to be a TV series that could take me all over the world, I don’t even know where I’m going to be based. So the future is all to play for. I’m only 45 and I feel like anything is possible. Wish me luck that I find that happy ending the women in my books never do!”

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