Today I am so pleased to welcome Mackenzie Blair to Joyfully Jay. Mackenzie has come to talk to us about her latest release, The Quarterback (which I reviewed here and loved!). She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving Mackenzie a big welcome!
One of the lead characters in The Quarterback is a Division II quarterback at a fictional Southern college. I grew up watching Division I college football with my family and learned early the cheers against our biggest rival. But when I graduated from high school, I broke with family tradition and moved to California for college. Luckily, I had a new rivalry to root for, so I could still cheer my heart out at the football stadium and basketball arena.
When I lived in San Francisco, I also began attending baseball games, because, well, food. I love stadium food. I love the thrill of being in the stands. I love the comradeship. When one of my alma mater’s former players came out as gay, everyone rallied around him with support. But I wondered, back home, how would that go down with a current student? Had things changed since I’d gone to college? What would the weight of that be like for a young kid playing college ball while hiding in the closet? And thus, the character of Matt Lancaster was born.
So then, I started thinking about his friends. Would they know? And how would they react? I decided I wanted to write a book about the strength of his friends and how they helped him find love. Well, lust at first, but it leads to love.
So who would this football god fall in love? Trevor Kim. I saw a picture of model from South Korea – moto leather jacket, cool modern pants, hair in a topknot, high cheekbones, and this attitude daring the world. Trevor’s a survivor, tough, a bit of a cynic. But Matt’s innocent charm manages to get under his defenses. He even starts to attend football games.
For the final game, I turned to my friend who’s a big football fan to make sure I had all the technical details correct. Then I had my friends who’ve never seen a game in their lives read it to make sure it was still clear and exciting. The scene passed the test! So even you’re not a football fan, I think you’ll still enjoy this book. And if you are a football fan, I envisioned them in the Gulf South Conference, so those are their rivals throughout the season.
Matt Lancaster is the star quarterback at Bodine College, a small Southern Division II school with an ultra-conservative Dean of Athletics. Matt is also very much in the closet, and he thinks he’s kept his secret well hidden. Until his best friends take him to a happy endings massage parlor and request a male masseuse for him.
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.
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!
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