Mary Kay Andrews Reveals Murderous Secret Identity!

Mary Kay Andrews books are transformative.  When you’re done with them, you think twice about your life decisions, and you feel as if you’ve found long-lost sisters.  She takes you down the back roads of America — to little towns and places where traditions and secrets run deep, and friendship runs even deeper.  Her heroines are the kind of women I want to be — brave, able to deal squarely with their problems (okay it might take a few chapters) and move in new directions.

(If you’re having trouble viewing the video, please update your adobe flash player)

But if you’re as much of a fan as I am — you might notice that there is always an element of suspense or mystery buried within the pages of her novels.  Well, the reason is finally made clear as she reveals that Mary Kay is also mystery writer Kathy Hogan Trocheck.  What a scoop!  Take that all you fancy reporters at CNN.  <smile>  And an even more recent scoop — Mary Kay just bought her dream house, Ebbtide, the one that was featured in her book Summer Rental!

I love Mary Kay’s dual identity more than I can say, because I also write both suspense and women’s fiction and can tell you, Mary Kay is exactly who I want to be when I finally grow up.


Today we’re giving away as prizes TEN COPIES of her newest women’s fiction novel:  Spring Fever — a fab read I know you’ll enjoy.  Don’t forget to leave a comment or ask a question here, on this website, in the comment box below, or at to be entered!  Mary Kay is going to try to stop by and respond to as many as possible.

Leaving a comment, today or tomorrow, at both websites counts as two entries, and if you hit follow on this website, it counts as a third entry for you to possibly win.  (Please remember to contact me within ten days of posting the winners on Thursday or you may forfeit your prize.  Chance of winning depends upon the number of people entered.) Good Luck!

40 thoughts on “Mary Kay Andrews Reveals Murderous Secret Identity!

  1. Am not familiar with the auhor, but very familiar with the interviewer! Her pick alone is intriguing, and am looking forward to the reading. Question for either of these ladies to address: How does an author with at least one nom de plume keep track of his/her identities when “out in public”?

    1. Hi, Bob. I have been writing pretty much exclusively as MKA for more than a decade. The names “Mary Kay” and “Kathy” are pretty much interchangeable to me now and I think many of my fans know that I have written under both names. The writing is similar enough, too, so that I am not contending with two distinct “personalities” who require upkeep of their own. But adopting the pseudonym made the transition out of mystery easier to do and allowed for a certain degree of reinvention that would have been more difficult otherwise.

  2. Bob, so great to see you here!

    I can tell you it is very hard. It takes a great deal of practice and sometimes submersion in that professional identity. There are days when authors forget to respond to people who call them by their pen names and then get the label of being snotty, when they’re merely forgetful. It can also be hard for people who are recognized in public as one person but have to travel or do business under their real legal name.

    But, there are benefits to using a pen name — an easier name to pronounce, privacy for your kids, a separation from your work identity that is important especially if you are a teacher or public official. Also, some publishers require in the publishing contract that an author use a pen name in order to control and brand a series, and the author will have no choice.

    Thanks for a great question!

  3. Nice interview ladies. I adore Mary Kay’s books and am a big fan! But I didn’t know she wrote under a different name. Looking forward to checking those books out, too ;0)

  4. Great job interviewing! I, too, am not acquainted with the writer’s work, but commend the interviewer for her efforts!


    1. Thanks for stopping by, Fred. I know you that you will want to go out and grab a copy of Spring Fever or The Fixer Upper when you can. Anyone who wants to understand how a woman thinks, should read MKA!


  5. Diana, great interview! I love your website too, purple is beautiful with the black. Gorgeous. I got goosebumps listening to Mary Kay talk about her dream of the woman in church and tapping her on the shoulder. Like you said, her books sound like they are filled with heartache but a happy ending. The best kind! Great job and I absolutely look forward to more video interviews by you. 🙂

  6. Fabulous interview, ladies! Mary Kay, how very fascinating that you dreamed the plot for your book! What’s even better is that you were able to insert yourself into the dream and get the character to tell you why she was there. I’m very “active” in my dreams myself — I can rewind a bad dream or magically insert a weapon when being chased by bad guys. Now, I’m going to try your trick of asking the characters what they’re doing! Like Diana said, maybe they will make me a bestselling author, too. 🙂 Best of luck and thank you for your insights on success!

    1. My goodness, Pintip, you sound as gifted a dreamer as Mary Kay! But, you don’t need your dreams to be a bestselling author, you’ve got real talent — and you’ll make it kiddo, just wait and see.


  7. That was a great interview! And I have to say, I think Ms. Andrew’s definition of success is an awesome one, probably the best one I’ve heard in a while from a writer. I have made similar successes my goals as well, not quite there yet, but I’m working on it. 😉 Very inspiring.

    Thanks for the nice interview, Diana.

  8. I loved your interview!!! She’s one of my favorite authors, and I can’t wait for Spring Fever’s release.

  9. Oops, meant the paperback release. I have a Kindle but there’s nothing like a real paperback book for a beach trip. Would love that book to be Spring Fever….hint, hint. 😉

  10. Diana, I’m so glad you and Mary Kay/Kathy got to chat.I’ve been reading her books since the first of her Callahan Garrity mysteries. And I’ve loved her books no matter what name she pens them under! Thanks for such entertaining stories, Mary Kay!

  11. I’m thinking about Summer Rental, and wondering how you orchestrate the plot and character development strands for three characters, within the same narrative. When I try to do this, I get massively tangled up! Can you give us any practical guidelines?

    1. Thank you for stopping by, Margaret. I’ll try to get you an answer from MKA. But, in the meantime, I’ll tell you about two different techniques I know of. The first is to use index cards in different colors and outline the plot points for each character. Lay them out on a bed or table and you can see if they balance — meaning do they each have equal weights or at least the weight you wish to assign them? By making a quick visual assessment, it can help with keeping the plot straight.

      The second method is an after-the -first-draft editing tool. Again it uses color and it’s from Margie Lawson. You highlight different aspects of your book–and by, once again, “seeing” the colors on the page, you can determine if the weight of story elements is correct.

      I hope this is helpful. Of course, I am no master like MKA. You might want to check out Margie Lawson online.


  12. I am a big fan of MKA and LOVE all of her books. Spring Fever is the only one I have not read. I worked in my county’s public library and discovered Kathy Hogan Trocheck and was forever hooked on her mysteries. Thanks for the interview!

  13. What a fantastic interview, including the ending! A few days ago, I wrote down a plot idea from a dream. I wish I’d included more details, though. It’s wonderful to hear from others who share the same “dreams” of writing success. Thank you, Diana and Mary Kay! Looking forward to checking out your books.

  14. Hi, y’all. Just getting the chance to check in on this thread. Thank you all very much for all the comments and questions. To answer Margaret’s question about orchestrating plot and character development for multiple characters and not getting tangled up…I’d say lots of practice & lots of ellipses! Seriously, it wasn’t easy. I did some pre-planning, outlining each characters problems, back story & conflicts. And it took a couple drafts before it fell into place. I am also fortunate to have a great editor to help me determine what to leave in and what to take out. Best of luck with your own writing!

  15. Fabulous interview, Diana. Half of me wishes I could consciously chat with people in my frequent nightmares, like Mary Kay did in her dream. The other half’s extremely grateful I can’t (although I’m sure real feedback from them would make great fodder for the muses).

    1. Hmm Granny Con, sounds like you suffer from bad dreams? I’ve learned to talk back to mine and tell those villains to go away. LOL. And yes, even the villains make great fodder for the muses. Thanks for being here.


  16. Diana,

    I have not read Spring Fever. I will have to check it out. Who knows I might even win a copy. I will point people to the video and thank you for giving us a glimpse of Mary Kay with your interview.


  17. Oh My I love Tybee Island and so I have now discovered Mary Kay Andrews!! Feel like I am right there, back in Tybee when I read her wonderful books!! Maybe one day I too can sit one my deck or balcony and look out over the surf relaxing with one of her entertaining creations!

  18. I want to thank all of you for being here, especially Mary Kay/Kathy! Now the ten copies of Spring Fever are going to:

    1. Tamrabaumann
    2. Paul Summey
    3. Susan
    4. Pintip
    5. Kathy Temean
    6. Carla
    7. Granny C
    8. Pjpuppymom
    9. Rolynanderson
    10. BethIrwin

    Remember you must contact me within ten days with you contact information and address or your prize might go to someone else!

    Congratulations everyone.

        1. Diana, just checking on the status of the book?? Just wondering if those had been sent out? Love your interviews!!

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