Anton Du Beke "wanted to be the next John Le Carre".
The ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ star - who sits on the judging panel alongside Shirley Ballas, Craig Revel-Horwood and Motsi Mabus - has revealed that he wanted to emulate the career of the late legendary spy novelist, but Anton ultimately realised that he was more suited to romance writing.
Anton, 57, told the Daily Express newspaper: "When I started writing, I wanted to be the next John le Carre.
"I love spy novels, you see. But after my second book, ‘Moonlight Over Mayfair’, was nominated for the Romantic Historical Novel of the Year Award I realised romance was more my thing."
Anton loves creating novels and he always gets "completely wrapped up in the process".
He said: "I love writing my books - although strictly speaking, I talk into a dictaphone and have a wonderful assistant who types my words out for me.
"I get completely wrapped up in the process. I love the history - especially the upstairs/downstairs aspect of it, the romance, the dancing element to the books."
Anton actually compared the experience to "discovering Narnia", the fictional world created by CS Lewis.
He said: "I liken the experience to opening a wardrobe, stepping inside and discovering Narnia. Anything and everything is possible. It totally fires up my imagination. People and the lives they live - or have lived - totally fascinate me.
"When people read ‘The Paris Affair’ or any of my books, I want them to react in the same way they do when they listen to music they love. To totally immerse themselves in it.
"To step inside the story and imagine themselves there - the Paris of the 1920s or London of the 1940s."