Hello, I’m Mackenzie Blair and I’ve been reading romance novels ever since my mom took me to used book sale after book sale as a teenager. I loved that every romance novel had a happy ending. (Those covers were also pretty scandalous to my small-town mind, so there was probably a good dose of rebellion in my reading as well.) A few years ago, I discovered MM romance, and although I’d considered writing a romance novel for years, it turns out it took an MM story to finally inspire me to finish one!
So I hope you enjoy reading THE QUARTERBACK as much as I loved writing it.
This is your first romance novel. Do you think you’ll write more?
I certainly have ideas for two other characters in the Bodine College world. I’ll just have to see if inspiration strikes and then, of course, find the time. My day job, is well, also writing. But for film and television. My friends find it very amusing that my “hobby” is writing as well, just in a different format, romance novels. But writing novels is far more freeform and relaxing than my day job. Plus, the book is the finished product, which is incredibly rewarding. So we’ll see…
Who are some of you favorite romance authors?
Growing up, I loved Judith McNaught. She made me laugh out loud and I loved her characters and plotting. Recently, I’ve really enjoyed Alexis Hall, Keira Andrews, and Sandino Haskell. They all have very different styles, so I can find whatever I’m in the mood for. And I’m constantly trying new authors.
Do you have a writing routine?
I used to write mostly at night. I’d stay up until the wee hours and then sleep in late. Now, I just try to fit it in whenever I can. Sometimes I still stay up late, especially when I have a big deadline, but I prefer to crawl into bed much earlier these days. I can’t really write well at cafes. I used to, but now I prefer just staying home, writing in my bedroom. I did finally splurge on an ergonomic chair, so that will hopefully arrive soon and give my poor back and wrists some relief.
Do you have any favorite forms of procrastination?
I’ll read the news, and when that gets to be too much, I’ll turn to retail therapy. I’ve also found an on-line version of Monopoly that I find strangely soothing. I get great joy out of beating the computer algorithm.
Do you believe in happy endings?
Yes. I rely on romance novels to make me smile and give me hope. In all my writing, I tend to look for the good more than the bad. For Matt and Trevor, the lead characters in The Quarterback, I wanted to give them a happy yet grounded ending. Something that seemed believable and sustainable. So I hope I’ve done that.
There’s another kind of “happy ending” in this book as well?
Ah yes. The steamier, sexier kind. It’s actually the set-up of a “happy endings” massage parlor that Matt’s friends take him to that really started me writing this book. How would he react when they requested a male massage therapist for him? I just really wanted to write that scene and the book took off from there.
About The Quarterback
In walks Trevor Kim, a gorgeous, pierced, tattooed fellow Bodine student who does massages—without happy endings—to pay for school after his family kicked him out for being gay. Trevor takes one look at Matt and breaks all his own rules about mixing business with pleasure.
Matt needs to keep his scholarship, win the National Championship, and survive his asshole father. Instead, he falls in love. Trevor needs to accept that the football god is meant to end up with him rather than a perky cheerleader. It’s time for a happy ending for both of them.
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About Mackenzie Blair
Mackenzie Blair is an award-winning screenwriter in Los Angeles who’s written for shows and films you’ve probably heard of. Mackenzie grew up in the South but fled the humidity for earthquakes, university, and a brief stint in finance. As a cynical idealist, she prefers to write happy endings whenever possible.
To celebrate the release of The Quarterback, one lucky winner will receive a $30 Riptide gift card! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on September 16, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!