JoeyPinkney.com Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
Nicole McGehee, author of Regret Not a Moment
The year is 1930. Beautiful, witty Devon is the daughter of a prominent Virginia family. Many men have fallen under her spell, but none has captured her heart, until she meets New York tycoon John Alexander. Their future seems assured: they will marry, raise a family, turn their country estate into the best Thoroughbred farm in the nation. But what Devon cannot foresee are the conflicts that will drive away her husband or the tragedy that will devastate their marriage.
Be transported from lush Virginia hunt country to sophisticated New York and the embassies of Paris. Travel from the Hollywood glamor of Hearst castle in its heyday to the turmoil of war-torn Cairo, and the enclaves of aristocratic England. Devon’s tale takes you through the decades from peaceful pre-war America to the danger of World War II, and the racial unrest of the South of the 1950s and’60s.
Enjoy the thrill of Thoroughbred racing with one of the first women to break into the male-dominated sport and one of the first African-American men to become renowned as a world-class trainer.
Joey Pinkney: Where did you get the inspiration to write “Regret Not a Moment”?
Nicole McGehee: I read an obituary of a woman who was a revolutionary in the male-dominated world of Thoroughbred racing. I thought the theme of a female ground-breaker would be compatible with the idea of a fictional African-American employee (soon-to-be good friend) becoming a ground-breaker in his own right.
“Regret Not a Moment” all came from my imagination. I did no research about the actual person because I didn’t want to write a biography. I set the tale in Virginia because I lived there, and it is famous horse country.
JP: What sets “Regret Not a Moment” apart from other books in the same genre?
NM: Unlike many self-produced e-books, “Regret Not a Moment” was purchased, edited and copy-edited by a major publisher: Little, Brown and Company, both in hard-cover and paper. In addition, it was bought by foreign publishers and translated into French, Spanish, and German.
JP: As an author, what are the keys to your success that led to “REGRET NOT A MOMENT” getting out to the public?
NM: A good query letter, which landed me offers from several agents. The agent I chose negotiated a very good deal for me.
JP: As an author, what is your writing process? How long did it take you to start and finish “REGRET NOT A MOMENT”?
NM: I start a book when an idea — and dialogue — are so stuck in my head that I have to free myself by writing it down. Once the beginning is down, the rest flows. I takes me 3-6 months to write my books. My editor at Little, Brown and Co. called for changes that took another month or so.
JP: What’s next for Nicole McGehee?
NM: A contemporary set in Washington, DC.