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Vicki Lewis Thompson | How I killed off the "Reading With Ripa Book Club"

September 14, 2007

Vicki Lewis Thompson It’s not my fault. I swear, I wasn’t the one who killed Kelly Ripa’s book club. Sure, I know it looks suspicious. In 2002 she was rockin’ along with her anti-Oprah picks, six of them, and didn’t we love it? Books with happy endings were getting on a TV talk show! Carly Phillips made it! Romance writers had a shot!

More important – it was all about me – I had a shot. I figured Nerd in Shining Armor might make the grade with Kelly. Then she went on maternity leave and Reading with Ripa took a short break. But the book club message boards were still up, and no one was throwing in the towel, least of all me.

Time marched on, however. My book came out the end of April, 2003, and no word from the LIVE folks indicating the book club would resume. It seems Kelly was home nursing her baby. I ask you, where were her priorities? Had no one suggested that she could nurse a baby and read a romance at the same time?

NERD IN SHINING ARMOR by Vicki Lewis ThompsonIn May, Kelly returned from maternity leave, and I held my breath. I held my breath for a very long time, so if I look a little peaked when next you see me, remember that I held my breath for approximately five weeks back in 2003 while I waited to see if a)Reading with Ripa was back in business and b)whether my submission had a chance in hell of making it.

Oh, glorious day, the answer was YES. I found out the first week in June that I was the seventh pick, baby! I could breathe again, which allowed me to drink copious margaritas in celebration. So I was on the show, the book hit the Times and my life changed forever.

Today LIVE with Regis and Kelly is celebrating twenty years on the air, and I’m thrilled for them. I wish them the very best! But it pains me to tell you that Kelly won’t be using the occasion to announce another Reading with Ripa Book Club Pick.

OVER HEXED by Vicki Lewis ThompsonYou see, there was no eighth pick. After my appearance on the show, the book club DIED. There, I’ve said it. Dear God, was it the white Capri pants paired with the deep blue blouse? Should I have gone with gold instead of silver jewelry? Was it my use of the word crucible? How did I go wrong? How did I manage to screw it up for the rest of the romance writing world???

Whatever it was, I deeply apologize. I’m very sorry, and mostly I’m sorry for myself, because I have this new series coming out, starting with Over Hexed on October 2, and I could really, really use the boost.

Vicki Lewis Thompson

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