Richard Madeley says he was inspired to write his first novel because he couldn’t help feeling jealous of Judy Finnigan’s success with hers.
TV presenter Judy published her debut novel Eloise earlier this year, and now husband Richard has published his first foray into fiction, Some Day I’ll Find You, a thriller set in World War II France.
Richard admitted: “Judy’s success gave me a slightly schizophrenic reaction. A large part of me is so proud of her. But of course it’s set the bar for me. I’m not aiming to take over Judy though, that would be silly.”
And the 57-year-old confessed he was terrified what Judy would make of his book, as she is his toughest critic.
He said: “Of all the terrifying moments when I submitted the book, I was the most nervous when I gave it to Judy because I knew she would tell the truth.
“She’s ruthless, she can’t help it. It’s not cruel, she just cannot dissemble. If I make dinner and she doesn’t like it she wouldn’t be able to say it’s delicious, and even if she did I’d see it all over her face.”
But he revealed: “I went out for the day and hid and when I came back it was great and she was lovely and nice about it. I knew she was telling the truth and she genuinely really liked it.”
Richard has written non-fiction books before, but he spent two years struggling to come up with a plot for his novel, and admitted he almost gave up.
“Eventually I decided I wasn’t a novelist, so I emailed my publicist saying I was going to come up with some synopses for factual books and went to bed,” he explained.
The next morning he went downstairs to cook Sunday lunch and was suddenly conscious, he said, that a family had moved into his head overnight.
“I drove my family mad during lunch because I kept having these eureka moments, clapping my hands to my head and running into the other room to write notes down.”