Kelly Ripa says publishing her first book, Live Wire, is about "correcting the record" — and she does so on topics including her complicated relationship with former co-host Regis Philbin, aging on camera and keeping the spark alive in her long-running marriage to Mark Consuelos.
"As women we are trained to not be disruptive in any way," the Live with Kelly and Ryan host, 51, tells Yahoo Entertainment about her book of short stories. "If a person says something and it's not true or inaccurate, we are trained to just take the high road, to never set the record straight no matter how detrimental it is to our own sanity, reputation, work life."
So Ripa approached her storytelling with "the importance of correcting the record" in the more serious parts of the book. She says she "felt that I owed it to myself ... to have an accurate representation of what actually occurred... What I just wanted to put out there was the truth."
While Ripa calls it "a great privilege" to have worked alongside the TV icon Regis Philbin, who died in 2020, "it was not an easy working relationship." So in the book, "I take the audience on a journey as to what it was like to be there, and how unfair it was for Regis first and foremost because ... it was his show and nobody should have a workmate forced upon them."
She continues, "Most of this book took me maybe eight months to write — and the other year and a half was focused on those two chapters [about Regis] because it was hard," she admits. "That's why I don't let my words really speak for me. I let transcripted conversations speak for themselves because I don't wanna put words into people's mouths. I don't want things that weren't on record to be in the book. I want it to be read the way it was stated."
KELLY RIPA: You hear people that talk about their truths, you know, I want to speak my truth, or somebody's speaking their truth, or this truth. When things are on record the way they are, clearly it's kind of just the truth. That's what I just wanted to put out there was the truth. Kelly Ripa here, author of "Live Wire, Long-Winded Short Stories." Let's go under the covers.
It's been the privilege of my life to host "Live," even though I never saw myself hosting this show, and I certainly didn't see myself hosting the show for 23 years. The chapters Fool me Once Part 1 and 2, I really take the audience on a journey as to what it was like to be there and how I think unfair it was for Regis because it did feel like his show. And it was his show. And nobody should have a workmate forced upon them.
There's a common misconception about the nature of these jobs on camera. I'm in a unique working situation right now with Ryan Seacrest because we have had a 20-year friendship. But most people think that is everybody on TV. And that is very seldom the case.
And I make no illusions that there was this friendship. I know that he liked and respected what I did on the air. And I liked and respected him as well. But having said that, it was not an easy working relationship. But there seemed to be this pervasive narrative that somehow I abandoned our friendship.
As women, we are trained to not be disruptive in any way. So if a person says something and it's not true or inaccurate, we are trained to just take the high road. With that spirit, I wrote certain chapters about the importance of not allowing other people's narratives to be attached to you. We all owe it to ourselves to have an accurate representation of what actually occurred.
Mark and I and our marriage sort of evolved over time. For me, it was love at first sight. Slowly over time, he fell in love too. Writing about our marriage was a very unique thing because I did allow him to have veto power, and he did veto some of the stories. When you're raising a family, it's not always the spark. It's not always hot. It's not always sexy. Sometimes you are just working parents. And that's what we were for many years.
The empty nest chapter, I began writing it the day we dropped Joaquin off at University of Michigan. We felt very fragile as a couple in that moment. We were sort of emotionally drained. And I thought, oh, no, is this the beginning of the end? Are we the couple that the youngest child goes to college and then they find out they have nothing in common anymore?
We really reconnected in that way that we had forgotten about. We forgot how much we enjoyed each other's company. It's about careful maintenance throughout the duration of your marriage and not sort of throwing in the towel the second it gets not hot or not sexy, or you have an argument about something.
Nothing besides abuse is insurmountable. And I'm very careful to say that in the book. It's like unless you are trapped in a loveless or abusive marriage, you can figure it out. And you can get to the other side of that and have a real connection on the back end.
My ultimate goal for the book is that people take a little bit of humor, a little bit of knowledge, a little bit of self-advocacy away from this book. It really is not a self-help book. But if it does help a person advocate for themselves in a better way, in a more effective way, then I will be a very happy woman.