The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed. ~C.G. Jung
I love meeting authors. Who doesn’t? (perhaps none readers, maybe?) Especially ones I’ve followed and are very familiar with their work, not to down play meeting new and upcoming authors. Nope, that’s a different kind of fun, the finding of a new book, a new author, especially one unheard of in the mainstream, and becoming one of their original fans and spreading the word on their new work. On the other hand, meeting accomplished authors carries an intrigue and excitement with the encounter. Plus, it tends to carry a celebrity status. I’ve met a few authors, some mainstream and some nearly unheard of (not as many as I’d like), and they were all really amazing and down to earth people, just like my newest encounter.
Let’s talk Mary Kay Andrews. She’s a New York Times Bestselling Author, of Hissy Fit, as well as other novels. She’s also the author of one of my favorites, Summer Rental. Currently, she’s on her book tour promoting her 24th novel, The Weekenders.
I was introduced to Mary Kay Andrews by a good friend of mine, Kelly Berger. Yep, she was shopping and came across one of her books, and was instantly drawn to the idea of a story taking place at the beach. Kelly’s a HUGE beach fan, especially the areas around Hilton Head, Cape Hatteras and the Outer Banks. I don’t have to tell you, Kelly read Summer Rental and was an instant fan, purchasing all published pieces by Mary Kay Andrews.
Since Kelly and I have always swooped books, and discussed authors and new releases, it was only a matter of time before Mary Kay Andrews would remain a staple on my bookshelf, too. Kelly and I mostly have similar tastes when it comes to reading material, although her interest stops shy of fantasy. Summer Rental happened to be a story fit for both of our personalities, and once I’m hooked on an author, I’m hooked.
I met Kathy Hogan Trocheck, a.k.a. Mary Kay Andrews this past Sunday, May 22 at the Mystery Lovers Bookshop in Oakmont. (514 Allegheny River Blvd. Oakmont, PA 15139). What a cute little bookstore!
The day started out rainy and kind of ugly, you know a typical Pittsburgh day, perfect for staying inside and getting acquainted with an accomplished author. Since I had Kyle, I thought this was the perfect opportunity for him to meet an author too. I didn’t think it mattered if he read her works or not. At least that was my thinking. Kyle had a different opinion. I guess it would have been a better time for him if he knew the author, but regardless it was a good experience.
All the ladies who showed up were fantastic! I enjoyed the company as much as I did the purpose of my visit to MLB. Mary Kay Andrews discussed The Weekenders and answered questions about her books, her influences, her family and so on. It was great! She’s so down to earth with a touch of sass! I loved listening to her!
While waiting in line to get my book autographed (I got one for Kelly too), I struck up a conversation with the lady behind me. We began talking about books, naturally, and somehow I mentioned I’ve written a book (plus a few started). Let me step back, during the Q & A session, Mary Kay Andrews asked if we had any authors in the audience. I didn’t raise my hand, only because my book still needs to be edited and isn’t published. Well, by the time it was my turn, this wonderful lady, stepped in and informed Mary Kay Andrews of my secret. You know, Mary Kay Andrews seemed very interested, and asked me questions about my book. She told me to keep writing and go for it. What an inspirational lady!
The entire day rocked. Not only did I get to meet Mary Kay Andrews and get to purchase her latest book, and have it autographed, but spending the day with Kyle was much needed. Granted, he played his video games during the entire book signing, but when it was my turn, Kyle jumped up and snapped a picture of me and Mary Kay Andrews. Thanks buddy! I really wanted a picture with all three of us, but Kyle already put his foot down in advance. I didn’t want to push the issue and so I let it alone. I simply happy to spend some time with Kyle.
During the Q & A session I learned a number of fun facts about Mary Kay Andrews. Second to my addiction of reading, is my love of random fun facts. Here are a few to wet your whistle.
- Mary Kay Andrews is a pseudonym for Kathy Hogan Trocheck
- Received a B.A. in newspaper journalism from The University of Georgia in 1976
- Began her career in newspaper journalism, working at the Savannah News-Press 1976-77
- Worked for the Marietta Journal 1977-79
- Reported for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution from 1980 until she left in 1991 to write books
- Born July 27, 1954, in Tampa, Florida
- A native of St. Petersburg, Florida
- Married her high school sweetheart
- From a big Catholic family
- Mary Kay Andrews is a combination of her children’s names—Mary Kay for her daughter Mary Kathleen, and Andrew, for her son, Andy
- Self proclaimed “junker”
- Owns two restored beach cottages on Tybee Island, GA, both of which named for fictional locations in her novels
I can’t wait to begin this book! Check her out! She’s a southern hoot!
Happy reading everyone!