Haute Living Exclusive: Interview With Real Housewife Vicki Gunvalson

So what happens behind the scenes of a hit reality show when the cameras are off? A new book by Vicki Gunvalson, TV reality star from the hit series Real Housewives of Orange County will be hitting the market and will answer all those questions. More Than A Housewife is a book that describes what Vicki’s “reality” truly is and what her life was like before all the limelight.

More Than A Housewife provides a glimpse into Vicki Gunvalson’s reality TV world but will also serve as a motivational tool that can guide readers to achieve and recognize their purpose — to find direction through Vicki’s insight with stories of trials and tribulations. Whether man or woman, single parent or not each can read the book and take the knowledge and steps that Vicki is sharing as a successful businesswoman. More Than A Housewife will take you from her childhood through to her adult years with honest stories of divorce, single parenting, illness, loss, children, marriage and so much more gearing each reader to stories of success and future goals. “Winners of the race donʼt slow down,” is a favorite motto of Vickiʼs and while her current success seems as the pinnacle – for Vicki there is no slowing down constantly creating goals in order to achieve continuous success in every endeavor.

While on Real Housewives of Orange County, we have all gotten to know and love Vicki as the perfectionist housewife. Knowing that Vicki has written More Than A Housewife, expect nothing less than literary perfection. A true story of how she is not just another housewife but a motivator, successful businesswoman, friend, wife and mother. A story of Vicki’s life with an opportunity to get a sense of what being on a reality show is like, her relationship with her children and the love she has for her husband, Donn. I spoke with Vicki over the phone Monday morning. Here’s what she had to say about her book, fellow housewives, season six, her fave spots in South Florida and of course, her signature cocktail.

HL: You’ve endured five seasons of The Real Housewives of Orange County, run one of the most successful insurance agencies in the United States and all the while balance a family. Where in the world did you find time to write this book?

VG: Time is something I struggle with. The things that suffer most are my husband and my own sleep. I’m aware of it. God gives us 24 hours in a day. When I get up there to see him I’m going to tell him I needed 36 to 40. I push so much into one day because I feel lost if I don’t. I’m productive and I feel like I have balance.

HL: How do you achieve balance between work and family?

VG: You have to do something you love. I encourage anyone who is unhappy to find out what makes them happy. You must have a passion. I run across so many people who hate what they are doing. It makes me sad. I stumbled upon insurance because my girlfriend was doing it and here I am 20 years later loving it every day. I tell people to find what they love and do it 110 percent.

HL: Goals are big for you.

VG: I’m a big believer in goal setting. Any goal-oriented person will have a list of goals. I add to mine diligently every day.

HL: It seems like your marriage is stronger than ever (I loved the episode where you and Donn renewed vows), your son Michael has joined your company, it appears your daughter Briana is healthy and we obviously know your business is thriving. What inspired you to relive some of your hardest times and write the book? Why now?

VG: The viewers. The viewers asked me to tell them what drives me. I feel strongly about being self sufficient. I felt the viewers needed to hear more about who I am and what I do. We all have to be ready for the unknown. Donn could be taken away from me at any point in time. I hope we don’t ever get a divorce but it’s out there. The statistics are strong.

HL: How has the book been received so far?

VG: Really well! I wanted to do this. It was on my bucket list and it’s fun to cross it off.

HL: Tell us a little about it? What can we learn from your book?

VG: The viewers who have followed me on the show can learn more about my history and my past. I was in a bad marriage for nine years and it was miserable. I encourage those who are miserable to get out. I know there are those that say “till death do us part” but I don’t believe in that. Why live in misery? I speak a lot about abuse and violence in relationships.

HL: I admire you spreading that message. Atlanta housewife NeNe Leakes advocates for similar causes, too.

VG: I find so many women stay in bad relationships. If you are in a bad relationship, change it.

HL: What else will we learn from the book?

VG: Business sense and what it takes to build a business. I also talk about insurance and why we need it and alot on the economy. My book is good for any gender.

HL: How has the show changed your life?

VG: It’s given me a sense of self confidence and insecurity at the same time. I’m not the skinniest or prettiest woman on the show. Sometimes I say “why me” and then I think “why not me.” We just started filming season six and I really struggled coming back.

HL: So you will be back for another season?

VG: Yes. We are in week two of four to five weeks of filming. I was not happy last year and I didn’t want to get caught crying again. Then I realized I had a message and a platform to spread it.

HL: What do you think of the new D.C. season?

VG: I have not seen it. I am not good about watching other shows. I’m not a big TV watcher.

HL: Fair enough. I find you one of the most down to earth housewives on the show. Do you ever see yourself leaving the glitz of California and moving back to Chicago?

VG: Yes. I feel displaced in California. I don’t feel like it’s home. I can’t put my finger on it. I feel it’s a temporary place. I love my lifestyle, but I miss my friends back home.

HL: Speaking of friends, are you and Jeana friends again?

VG: No, I haven’t seen her in eight to 10 months. She’s not a good friend. I have no desire to see her. You have to weed them out. You don’t keep people who hurt you in your life. She doesn’t feel she did anything wrong. I’m all about bringing positive people in my life.

HL: I know there was a lot of conflict when you visited Florida on the show but do you have any favorite spots in south Florida?

VG: I actually love Florida! I stayed at the Ritz-Carlton and had a great time. I would like to retire in Florida. I love West Palm Beach and Ft. Lauderdale. I love Anushka Salon & Spa in West Palm Beach.

HL: That’s a great place. Random but final question – what is your signature drink?

VG: Blue cheese olive dirty martini.

HL: Woo hoo!

To pre-order More Than A Housewife, visit www.morethanahousewifebook.com. For information on Vicki Gunvalson, her recently launched Vicki Lynn Denim Line or Coto Insurance & Financial Services visit www.vickigunvalson.com.