The idea of speed dating is that you get 10 minutes to sit down with a prospective date and get to know them. In that spirit, we present Author Speed Date. A quick 10 minutes for you to get to know some of our clients. Today we’d like you to meet Sally MacKenzie.
BookEnds Author Speed Date
Name (the one you’re published under): Sally MacKenzie
Speed date Bio: Sally is the USA Today bestselling author of the funny, hot, Regency-set Naked Nobility series for Kensington Zebra. She’s a graduate of the University of Notre Dame (first class of women), Cornell Law School dropout (no JD, but an MRS ;)), former federal regulation writer (Ketchup as a vegetable anyone?), recovering parent volunteer (four sons!), and current Masters swimmer (middle of the pool—more a turtle than a hare).
Next book, pub date: The Naked King, June 7, 2011
Agent: Jessica Faust
Real Name or Pseudonym: Sally MacKenzie
Currently Reading: Tiger Eye by Marjorie M. Liu and The Age of Wonder by Richard Holmes
Next on Your Reading List: My TBR pile is mountainous but probably My One and Only by Kristan Higgins and The Complete Servant by Samuel & Sarah Adams
Three authors living or dead you would want to have dinner with: Jane Austen, Georgette Heyer, and Christopher Hibbert, who was the coeditor of The London Encyclopaedia and the author of many other books, including a biography of King George IV
Jet-setter or armchair traveler: Armchair traveler—have you ever tried to travel with four little boys? However, now that they’re grown, we’re getting out a bit more.
Glass ½ full or ½ empty: Sort of depends what’s in the glass.
Tea or Coffee: Two cups of Maxwell House International Suisse Mocha—one in the morning and one after lunch—and gallons of decaf tea, usually Bigelow’s Spiced Chai with milk. (Yes, I am a creature of habit.)
Live to write or Write to live: Write to live. I find writing lets me explore feelings and relationships and think about things in a way I don’t when I’m not writing. It helps focus me . . . when things are going well. But if we’re talking about making a living, let me just say I’m very glad no one’s next meal depends on my writing income.
About My Writing
When (time of day) I write: Daily, but the time of day varies depending on what else is on my schedule. Exercise is a priority, so on days I go to the gym, I start writing later in the morning. Days I swim at night, I try to write first thing. I’m happiest when I get some solid work done in the morning, but, sadly, some days I write morning, afternoon, and night to get three “good” hours in or five pages, my daily goal.
Writing soundtrack: While in theory I like the idea of writing to music—seems like music might act like Pavlov’s bell on dogs and get me down to work immediately—I actually write in silence.
Character Inspirations: With the Naked series, many of my characters are friends or siblings of characters in earlier books, so I get inspiration for them from musing about their families, occupations or avocations, and life experiences. And I suspect there’s a little bit of me in all of them, even the villains.
Plot Inspirations: My characters lead me where they want to go.
Setting Inspirations: Since I write Regencies—and even as a reader, I wasn’t a fan of exotic Regency settings—I stick pretty much to London (1816-1821) or the English countryside and great houses. Until last September, I hadn’t been to England since I backpacked through with my best friend the summer after our senior year of high school, which was, ahem, a few years ago. So I rely heavily on the Internet and a stack of reference books.
Plotter (carefully plot books) or Pantser (write from the seat of my pants): To my surprise, I’m pretty much a pantser.