Longtime south Scottsdale resident, and New York Times bestselling author, Jenn McKinlay, is preparing for two new books to be released in upcoming months.
A women’s fiction novel, "Paris is Always a Good Idea," comes out July 21; while her next mystery, "One for the Books," releases on Sept. 1.
A frequent speaker at Civic Center Library prior to the novel coronavirus, Ms. McKinlay tells us a little bit about herself.
Name: Jenn McKinlay
Age (optional): 53
Occupation: New York Times bestselling author.
Why you chose to work in your field: I love books and I love reading --- so much so that I became a part-time librarian. When I couldn’t find anything I wanted to read, I decided to write the story myself.
What I like most about what I do: I love getting a new idea for a story, being creative for a living is such a thrill, but most of all, I love hearing from readers who tell me that my comedies got them through a tough time. It’s humbling to know you can help complete strangers with your words.
Where did you come from: I was born in Connecticut but moved to Arizona in my twenties. I’ve been here ever since.
If I had picked a different occupation, it might have been: A private detective. I find people and the shenanigans they get into endlessly fascinating, plus I like the idea of catching criminals.
What is a challenging aspect of your job? Deadlines. So many deadlines! There’s a deadline for when the manuscript is due, then the copyedits, then the galleys. My publisher, Penguin Random House, keeps me busy!
People who inspired me (and how): I write in two different genres, women’s fiction and traditional mystery. There are so many authors who’ve inspired me – from Agatha Christie to Roxane Gay – but even more, I am inspired by my family. I was fortunate enough to be raised by creative parents who taught me to view the world with an artist’s eye.
One thing I want my clients to know about me: I’ll never torture or harm any animals or children in my books. You’d be amazed at how many people ask me this when they hear I’m a writer. Seriously, I’m all about good triumphing over evil and living happily ever after with plenty of laughs along the way.
My advice to today’s youth: When you go after what you want you will be rejected a thousand times. I know as I have a fat file of rejection letters to prove it, but all it takes is one yes. Keep going until you get that yes.