I agree with… Deborah McKinlay

Deborah McKinlay “I can say now that the lean years focussed me on what I really wanted – in that nothing-to-lose way that is often motivating. But I am in no rush to repeat them. I hope, if you’re still battling through, that you find yourself with a packet of smoked salmon in your grocery basket when you least expect it. I did.” 

[in an interview with ‘We Love This Book’, March 12, 2014]

Deborah McKinlay

[photo: orionbooks.co.uk]

McKinlay [above], a published non-fiction author and journalist, wrote a novel The View from Here. After a struggle to find an agent in London, she sold it herself to a small New York publisher. Struggling for grocery money, she continued to write. Now describing herself as “not only mid-career; I am also mid-life – too old for a girly agent pal,” she returned to the agent trail in New York, feeling the American characters in her new novel That Part Was True would be more attractive to a US agent. She found one, who promptly sold the novel back to the UK where it is published by Orion.

So, a circular trail. I took two lessons from Deborah’s experience:- don’t give up, and be true to yourself.

To read the full interview with Deborah McKinlay at We Love This Book, click here.
To read a review of That Part Was True in The New York Times, click here.

If you agree with Deborah McKinlay, perhaps you will agree with:-
Vanessa Lafaye – on weaving together fiction and historical fact
Roddy Doyle snappy dialogue is the best way to keep the momentum going
Amanda Hockingwrite a lot, but read even more

Deborah McKinlay


‘That Part Was True’ by Deborah McKinlay [UK: Orion]

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
The lean years make you focus: I agree with… Deborah McKinlay #amwriting http://wp.me/p5gEM4-155 via @SandraDanby


  1. Seems like you get what you aren’t looking for…and it’s always what’s right. I’m not familiar with this author, thanks for the intro!