Reading another person’s diary is usually the stuff of daydreams or snooping, but Bravo Media’s Watch What Happens Live host Andy Cohen is opening up his journal in The Andy Cohen Diaries: A Deep Look at a Shallow Year.
The book, published by Henry Holt and Co., is inspired by The Andy Warhol Diaries, published after the artist’s death.
Cohen sat down at a midtown New York steakhouse owned by a close friend (often mentioned in his book) for a recent Associated Press interview. He has a regular table that’s across from his caricature decorating the wall, along with hundreds of drawings of other celebrities. The 46-year-old knows the staff and greets them by name. “It’s my Regal Beagle,” Cohen joked, referring to the ’70s sitcom Three’s Company.
He talked about sharing his diary and being an executive producer of The Real Housewives shows.
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Is it strange to put yourself out there and let people see who you are?
Yes, at first I went into this and I was like, ‘I’m not going to talk about dating or boyfriends.’ Then months later I went back and filled stuff in. … I was like, ‘I’m just putting all this in there. It’s just fun.’ … The longer you do something you feel more open to the process. There’s an original entry about a Britney Spears interview where I had edited myself. I went back and was like, ‘I need to put my real impressions of that day.’ I have to book my show; I don’t want to sell out my guests but if Mariah Carey comes in, I want to tell people what that experience was like.
Will your fans know you better after reading this book?
I think they know a version of me (now). I think when you’re live on TV in an unscripted environment a lot slips through the cracks of your real self. People can read my face, they know what I’m thinking.
You’re doing a book tour. Do you like meeting the fans?
I’m so touched that anyone would wait two minutes to meet me and take a picture with me, much less a couple hours.
What’s it like when you have friends as guests on your show? (Cohen’s close pals include Sarah Jessica Parker, Liam Neeson, Anderson Cooper and Kelly Ripa.)
I remember one of the first times Sarah Jessica was on, I asked her about dating J.F.K. (John F. Kennedy) Jr., which is something we’ve certainly talked about off-camera. And I remember I turned to her in the commercial break and was like, ‘Was that OK?’ She gave me a sign like it was fine but surprising.
Which “Real Housewives” show is the most stressful?
It’s all cyclical. It usually depends on what’s in production and what’s airing.
Do you listen to any of the feedback you get on the shows from social media?
You have to take it all with a grain of salt, but I pay attention to all of it. I write in the book that people were very vocal that we change up the New Jersey Housewives this season. We changed the cast and people were like, ‘We don’t like the new cast members. Bring back the originals.’
Meet Andy Cohen 10 a.m. Sunday during a Q&A and book signing at the Wolfson campus, Miami Dade College Auditorium, Building 1, 300 NE Second Ave., Miami; theandycohendiaries.com