Q & A with Catherine McKenzie and a giveaway!

19 Jan

If you read my review of Catherine McKenzie debut novel Spin, then you know that I simply fell in love with this book. I was so happy to get the chance to ask Catherine a few questions about writing and the book. AND, I get to give a copy of Spin away. Yay!!!! Nothing is better than sharing an excellent read with another book lover.

Lavender Lines: Besides Katie, which character was the most fun to write?

Catherine: I’d have to say Amber Sheppard (the actress Katie follows into rehab). It was fun thinking up outrageous things for her to do, but also to come up with some of her less stereotypical characteristics. In a way, Amber’s journey is bigger than Katie’s, and just as important.

LL: What are some of your favorite books/authors discovered in 2009?

C: The best book I read in 2009 was Andre Agassi’s Open. I was already a big fan of his (I watched his first televised professional match and his last and hundreds in between), but the book was gripping in a way I hadn’t counted on. I know he wrote it with someone else, but the voice, the honesty, feels like his. It also had extra meaning for me because my sister, who lives in Vegas, went to see him and got him to autograph my copy as a birthday surprise. I also just finished Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall – historical fiction about Thomas Cromwell, Henry VIII’s lawyer who was one of the chief architect’s of the Reformation. I studied Tudor & Stuart history in university, and I can’t even begin to imagine how she organized and learned the history well enough to write that book. Impressive.

LL: There are a lot of references to music throughout Spin and a track list at the end of the book. Are Katie’s musical musings indicative of your personal music preference?

C: In a word: yes. Probably too much so. Not that I love every song mentioned in the book or appearing on the playlist, but I am a huge fan of Bob Dylan, Matt Nathanson, David Grey, Eric Hutchinson and many of the others named in the book.

LL: You take on a very tough and serious topic in Spin (addiction). Was it hard to find the balance between maintaining the humorous tone of the book and addressing the serious consequences of drug and alcohol addiction?

C: It is something I struggled with at some points in the book. I didn’t want the book to come across as an attack on AA or treatment programs, but I knew a lot of the humour in the book had to come from Katie’s denial both of her own problems and the efficacy of the treatment she’s in. I didn’t want to offend anyone, but I did want to explore how someone who doesn’t believe in the fundamentals behind the twelve steps can succeed in treatment.

Contest deets:

Okay, now I get to give away one copy of Spin. This is my very first giveaway, so I wanted to do something fun. Here goes!

To enter to win a copy of Spin, all you have to do is comment with a “chick lit” moment you’ve experienced.  Not sure what I mean? Well, a “chick lit” moment I had was eating at a restaurant where the only other people there were my ex fiance and his whole freaking family.  I kid you not.  Or there was the time I interviewed with a company and half way through the interview realized I had research a different company with the same name (yeah, I so didn’t get the job). We’ve all had “chick lit” moments (even you guys!) so go ahead, dish the dirt. You’ll feel better. And you may win a copy of Spin.

A few small things……

The contest will run until Feb 18th.

It’s only for us Canucks, so if you don’t live in the Great White North (aka Canada) you’re out of luck.

Keep comments clean, please and thank you. Any comments I deem dirty will be deleted. Sorry folks, that’s just how I roll.


10 Responses to “Q & A with Catherine McKenzie and a giveaway!”

  1. greytfriend January 19, 2010 at 11:51 am #

    Congratulations, how fun to talk to a favorite author. Too bad I’m a lowly American 🙂 But at least I don’t have to try to remember an embarrassing moment for you. What a clever and fun contest requirement, good thinking!

  2. Jean January 19, 2010 at 3:50 pm #

    Yay! Yay! Yay! A Canadian contest. I’m Canadian, eh? Take off, eh? Woo!

    I totally want to read this book. I’ve been hearing reviews on Twitter and it sounds fun. I am also a huge chick lit fan.

    Okay, chick lit moment…hmmm…so many embarrassing ‘that didn’t work out well’ moments to choose from.

    How about the time I made a last minute decision to go as Pippy Longstocking for Halloween cabaret while in university?

    Yes, that will do.

    The day of the cabaret, I put a coathanger in my braids to make them stick out and dyed my overall shorts blue. The problem was, I was a student and couldn’t afford the striped leggings to complete the costume. I happened across some white longjohns and I had some paint on hand–I had been painting flowers and Neil Youngisms on my little ‘tin can’ car. So, I did what any creative student would do, I painted the longjohns. But man, did the paint smell! (It was metal paint.) This lead to roommate protests and the longjohns going outside to dry.

    But as Canadians all know, Halloween can be a very brisk time of year, making it needless to say that my longjohns did not completely dry before the cabaret. Not having a backup plan, I wore them anyway. They were mostly dry and I figured a few hours inside would do the trick.

    It didn’t. And the fumes were atrocious!

    All night long I had to be careful where and how I sat so I didn’t get paint on the chair and I lived in sheer terror of roaming smokers. (Smoking was still allowed in bars back then.) I feared between the red hairspray coating my blonde hair and the fumes emanating from my legs that I would become an instant fireball!

    In the end, I made it through the evening without having to replace any of the bar’s furniture and without any trips to the burn unit.

    But when I got home, I had another issue. The vast majority of the paint had dried making the longjohns not only stuck to my legs where the paint had seeped through the fabric, but the fabric had hardened.

    It only took a few days to get the paint off my legs.

    And then there was the time when I was on my way to my new first ‘real’ very serious job and my painted up flower car bit the dust. The man who rescued me was not just my boss, but my boss’ boss! Ay Karumba.

    Thanks for the fun!

  3. Marie January 26, 2010 at 2:59 pm #

    I needed a dress for graduation. Nothing over the top, nothing too frilly. I searched quite a few stores before settling on one. I liked it until two other girls in my class showed up in the exact same dress. If that wasn’t bad enough, they were in size 0 (back then it was a size 5 or so) and I, well, lets just say my dress size had/has more than 1 digit.

    Thanks for hosting this giveaway. I’ve heard such good things about this book.

  4. Jennifer @ Mrs. Q: Book Addict January 27, 2010 at 8:08 pm #

    I really want to read this one!

    This isn’t my chick-lit moment it’s my cousin’s but it’s very cute. She went into a interview and her jacket zipper broke, so she had to step out of her jacket as if it were a pair of pants. Very embarrassing!

  5. MartinaCK February 2, 2010 at 11:28 am #

    I’ve been trying for days to think of a chick lit moment. Maybe I’m getting old and can’t remember! Ok, ok. One this came to mind – I was at a restaurant with my friend and we had a really cute waiter. He came up to the table and when I tried to take a really sexy drink of my cocktail, my straw jammed into my nose. Not up the nostril, thank God, but still very embarrassing!! lol

  6. Sabrina-Kate Eryou February 2, 2010 at 2:39 pm #

    I read this book & loved it – I bought it, but I’d love to have a copy to give to a friend so she can enjoy (since I refuse to part with mine)

    A chick lit moment was when I realized that my ex-boyfriend and new crush are good friends. Yikes!

  7. Jean February 26, 2010 at 2:08 pm #

    Who won?

    • lavenderlines February 27, 2010 at 8:24 am #

      Ack, I’m sorry I forgot to announce it! I’ve been sick the past week with a serious stomach virus that landed me in the hospital yesterday with dehydration.

      In a very scientific random draw (I ask peeps on twitter for a number and the first number won.) Jennifer from Mrs. Q: Book Addict was the winner.

      For those of you who enter but didn’t win, I really, really strongly suggest you head out and pick up a copy. Amazon has twice sold out of copies, so you know it’s a hot ticket.

  8. Jean February 28, 2010 at 7:13 pm #

    Congratulations Jennifer!

    I hope you are feeling better, Lavenderlines!


  1. Tweets that mention Q & A with Catherine McKenzie « Lavender Lines -- Topsy.com - January 19, 2010

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by HarperCollinsCa, dsaarinen and Colleen McKie, Catherine McKenzie. Catherine McKenzie said: You can find a Q &A with me & a giveaway of SPIN at :http://tinyurl.com/yagysbr […]

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