Congratulations! It must have been so hard keeping the secret that you had won. Tell me what that was like.
The thing that was hard was not letting people know that I was even on the show. That was the hardest part. They didn't know until September.
So, while you were keeping the secret, were you just kind of preparing yourself for this big change that you knew was about to happen in your life?
Definitely. I realized that things were about to change so I just wanted to enjoy the moment.
Will you be moving to New York?
Yes. I plan to move to New York in the middle of January.
Is that scary?
No, it's exciting. It's sad. I'm leaving my friends. But it's exciting.
Do you plan to keep in touch with the girls from the show?
Absolutely. They affected my life a lot. They are very sweet.
Besides winning, of course, what was the best thing that came out of the competition?
I really loved winning the guest part on One Tree Hill. That could open a lot of doors too. That was really awesome.
Do you see yourself acting as well as modeling?
Absolutely. I mean modeling is just like silent acting.
Was Melrose a tough person to compete against in the finals?
Absolutely! She gave me a run for my money. I definitely didn't have it hands down. That's for sure.
Looking back at the show, was there any moment that made your cringe or say 'I wish they didn't air that'?
They kind of just blew up the whole comment I made to Nigel, which was ridiculous because he actually joked back. But I understand why they did it. I was just like 'Oh, come on.' I just felt like I had to explain myself. And also with my commercial (inaudible)...It was my first run through. It wasn't my final cut. I wasn't great but it wasn't as bad as how it was.
You mentioned on the show that you were in a dark place at one point in your life and you revealed [that you attempted suicide]. Do you regret bringing it up on the show or are you glad that you talked about it?
I just have no comment on that. I didn't physically try to do anything. It was just like I thought about it a lot.
Did Tyra give you any advice after you won?
Just be yourself. Be yourself and be smart. Live it up but don't take yourself too seriously. Don't get caught up in the things that living this lifestyle can bring -- which I don't at all.
Will Tyra always be an influence in your life?
Absolutely. If it wasn't for Tyra, I wouldn't be here. All of the success that I will ever have started with her. I'll always be grateful for that.