Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Ten Interesting Facts about Gabrielle March: On Tour with Christy McKee

Ten Interesting Facts about Gabrielle March

#1 Her favorite story
How Gabrielle’s dad had proposed to her mother was by far Gabrielle’s favorite story. Her dad, Jonathan March, worked in her grandfather’s newspaper. Each afternoon  her mother—who’d had her eye on Jonathan for months, would bring him a tall glass of lemonade and a plate of just baked cookies and place them on his desk. When her mother found out that some of the other employees were eating Jonathan’s cookies, she started wrapping them in foil and putting them in his top desk drawer. After a year of them “keeping company,” Gabrielle’s dad bought an engagement ring and put the ring box in his top drawer at the newspaper. He’d let the other employees in on his plan. When her mother arrived with her cookies and lemonade, the office seemed unusually quiet and her dad was not at his desk. Her mother opened the desk drawer and screamed when she spied the ring box. They were married six months later.

Gabrielle’s mother died when she was nine years old. From that day on she and her dad ate dinner every night at the Sugar Bowl restaurant. Together, they had sat in the same booth for ten years.
When Gabrielle didn’t get a date for her high school prom, her dad made her go to take photos for the newspaper. It was the most embarrassing night of her life and was captured for all eternity by the snarky yearbook photographer. Of course the photo made it into the yearbook, another happy moment in Gabrielle’s high school history. 
Gabrielle had an ongoing argument with her controlling father about her college major. She wanted to go into radio and television. Her dad refused to pay her tuition unless she majored in journalism and promised to go to work at his newspaper after graduation. 

For the first time in her life, she stood up to him and went against her father’s wishes. He cut her off financially and didn’t speak to Gabrielle for an entire year.

Even with the Georgia Hope Scholarship, Gabrielle still had to work two jobs to get through college but she graduated summa cum laude with a degree in Radio-TV-Film. Her father didn’t attend graduation.

In her junior year, Gabrielle was picked out of 1,200 applicants, to do an internship in the news department at ANN in Atlanta.

Hired by ANN after graduation, she began as an assistant to the news producer, but because of her good looks and on camera poise, she was bumped up to reporter. Soon after, she was elevated to the noon news slot and subbed on early and late news, as needed.  

Wanting to find some way to “give” back to her community, Gabrielle trained her black Lab, Max, to be a Canine Good Citizen, then took the requisite classes and tests, to qualify him to be a hospital/ hospice dog. Max and Gabrielle visit Children’s Hospital and four other local hospitals twice a month.

Gabrielle had never flown in any kind of plane until she was twenty-eight years old. In the very same week, she’d also seen her first ocean, the Atlantic, when she travelled to meet the Hastings in Massachusetts. 

An Excerpt

"The fact is, Mr. Hastings, it is not a reporter’s job to be favorable. They are in the business of finding and reporting the truth.”

            "Nobly put, Miss March.” The woman certainly didn’t pull any punches.

            “I hope this will put you at ease, Mr. Hastings. I own the newspaper. It’s been several years since I single-handedly set out to ruin anyone.”

            Sarcasm, even with a lovely Southern accent, was still sarcasm.

            "I see.” Pierce sounded duly impressed. “That’s certainly an accomplishment for such a young …” He froze when her eyes narrowed. What the hell was wrong with him? He careened from one blunder to the next.

            "Tell me, is it my age or the fact that I’m a woman that bothers you?” Her face was considerably more colorful than the rest of her and he knew it had nothing to do with the heat.

             Pierce was no chauvinist and certainly had no prejudice against successful females. After all, he’d been married to a talented trial attorney. Hadn’t he put his wife through law school? Hadn’t he supported Glenna in every way until she made partner in her firm and then announced that she’d changed her mind about having children and, by the way, she didn’t want to be his wife anymore either.

            "I didn't mean that you weren't responsible.” His eyes returned to the very entertaining Miss March who had just snapped up the ball and was ready to run with it.

            "What would someone like you know about responsibility anyway? You've probably never put in an honest day’s work in your entire over-privileged life. Flying around the world trying to stay one step ahead of reality. One of these days you’re going to have to come down to earth and see what it’s like in the real world.”

             Where did the woman get her information? She’d obviously pegged him as some sort of wealthy derelict. Fired up, she was something. Misinformed maybe, but she had balls of steel. "For a newspaper woman, you’re lacking in your facts, Miss...." 
 The Author
My addiction to reading emerged  when I was ten and down with measles. My mother, trying to keep me entertained,  brought home a stack of Trixie Belden and Nancy Drew books. Within days, I’d consumed them all and asked for more. That’s when it truly began−the pleasure of reading which would eventually lead to my writing.

I can’t pin point precisely when I knew I was different from everyone else−at least from my tight group of  hometown friends. Didn’t everyone have movies playing in their heads starring beautiful  characters leading adventurous lives in exotic places?  NO—they did not. Did that mean  they  were normal and I was the odd, slightly wacky duck?  My answer to that conundrum came when I attended my first writer’s conference in Savannah. Nervous about being on my own at the crowded event, a kindly writer from Texas took me under her wing and introduced me to at least a dozen writers.  Surrounded by so many writers who were so like me, I  fit  right in. I wasn’t an “odd” duck after all; I’d simply been in the wrong pond!

As a result of that conference, my desire and conviction to write blossomed. Still working a full time job at  a Louisiana cancer center,  I carved out time to write every night and on weekends. My first manuscript went through four incarnations, and a year under the bed,  before success came knocking.

Today my family and our two Labs—Lambeau, the Green Bay Packers unofficial mascot  and Gracie, who is just plain, sweet Amazing Grace—live  in a picturesque little town in Ohio wrapped around a lovely town square with an intricately carved gazebo where weekly band concerts take place all summer long.   

Where else can your readers find you? 


  1. Thanks for the "Ten Interesting Facts" list. I love Gabrielle's favorite story. It's so sweet. I'm having fun following the blog tour. Thanks.


  2. I love the Ten Facts, thank you. This sounds like a great story.

  3. Good morning everyone. I am so happy to be here with you. Many thanks to MK for having me as her guest today.

    Christy McKee

  4. I always enjoy fact lists about book characters. Nice post Christy and wonderful having you with us today.

  5. Gabrielle sounds fun to be around. :-)

  6. Edith,

    Thank you. It's always my goal for the heroine to be someone readers would enjoy hanging with.


  7. I loved reading the 10 things. However, did you and your father ever reconcile?

    Love the excerpt.

  8. Momjane,

    You asked a good question but unfortunately it would "spoil" a few things if I answered it. Gabrielle's issues with her father are an integral part of the story.

  9. Marian,

    I'll look forward to your opinion. Thanks so much for commenting.


  10. Ingeborg,

    I am so glad you enjoyed the "ten" things.

    Thank you for coming by today.


  11. MK,

    This was fun! Lots of comments and good questions.

    Thank you for having me as your guest. I'll notify the ebook winner tomorrow.

    All the best,

    Christy McKee

  12. Thank you for sharing this unique post! I'm really looking forward to reading your book!


  13. Thanks for sharing the list of facts.


  14. I like that Gabrielle stood up to her dad to do what she wanted to do. Sometimes father DOESN'T know best.
    catherinelee100 at gmail dot com

  15. Catherine,

    I love it. You're right. Sometimes father doesn't know best--especially in GAbrielle's family!


  16. I like the facts list--much less spoilerish than your average character interview!