Inside the Book Party for Melissa Francis’ Diary of a Stage Mother’s Daughter

By Chris Ariens 

Melissa Francis jokes that she wants to be writer when she grows up. The Fox Business Network anchor is already on her second career. And with the publication of her memoir, “Diary of a Stage Mother’s Daughter,” she’s on her way to fulfilling that adulthood dream. Francis was feted last night at Astra, an event space overlooking Manhattan’s East River. The memoir is a brutally honest, sometimes painful, yet touching story of life as a child actor. After dozens of commercials, her first big break came on “Little House on the Prairie.”

In a Media Beat interview this summer Francis told us the book, includes “the typical family dramas, set against the backdrop of a very unusual childhood.”

But last night, no drama, just celebrating. Among the guests, FNC/FBN c0-founder and chairman Roger Ailes, FBN EVP Kevin Magee, anchors Neil Cavuto, Liz Claman, Lori Rothman, Cheryl Casone, Elizabeth MacDonald, Tracy Byrnes, Sandra Smith, Nicole Petallides, Tom Sullivan and Dennis Kneale.

From FNC, we spotted Bill Hemmer and chatted with Megyn Kelly about election night, and the moment that took her from the studio through the bowels of Fox News to the decision desk as they explained calling Ohio for Pres. Obama, giving him the election and giving Karl Rove agita. Following many long months of election coverage and, more recently, of Hurricane Sandy, which left her without power for a week, Kelly was looking forward to taking today off.

From Francis’s old stomping grounds we chatted with CNBC’s Melissa Lee and Mary Thompson where the talk is all about the fiscal cliff and the post-election market moves. Also spotted: Tyler Mathisen,┬áKaren Finerman, Kate Kelly and Courtney Reagan.

And from NBC Contessa Brewer and Hoda Kotb, who gives a rave review of “Diary.” It’s “captivating, revealing, and ultimately healing,” Kotb says. Francis will be a guest on the fourth hour of “Today” next week.

Francis dared us to read the first few pages and try not putting it down. We nearly lost the bet.

“I realized the thing that was holding me back was telling my story but trying to fictionalize it,” Francis told us. “And what came out was an authentic book that was my own story.”

  • Video from last night’s event, aired on Francis’ FBN show Friday: