(more than) 5 Things we didn't know about Emma and Nicola

rsz_mclaughlinkraus_first_affair_final_cover copyOur guests today: Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus Why we love them:  Besides the fact that they written some of our all-time fave books (Nanny Diaries, anyone?), they are totally funny and smart and AWESOME! (Um, ya, we have a girl crush in case you haven't noticed...)

Their latest: The First Affair (Out today!)

The Scoop: Jamie McAlister has resigned herself to the fact that in this job market, her painfully expensive degree might only get her a position at Starbucks, when she suddenly lands a prestigious internship at the White House. Although she doesn’t hit it off with the other interns—lockjaws who come from so much money that ten weeks without a paycheck doesn’t faze them—she is eager to work hard and make the best of the opportunity while it lasts.

An unexpected encounter late one evening with the charismatic President Gregory Rutland seems like just a fleeting flirtation, but when he orchestrates clandestine meetings and late-night phone calls, their relationship quickly escalates. Jamie knows what she is doing is wrong: he’s married, he has kids, he’s the President. Yet each time she tries to extricate herself, Greg pulls her back in.

With the conflicted desires of the most powerful man in the world driving her to her breaking point, Jamie can’t help but divulge intimate details to those closest to her. But she must have confided in the wrong person, because she soon finds herself, and everyone she cares about, facing calculated public destruction at the hands of Greg’s political enemies, and—perhaps no matter how much he cares about her—at the hands of Greg himself.

Our thoughts:  Fast-paced and fun--another winner from our favorite writing duo!

Giveaway: TWO copies!  Leave a comment to be entered.  We'll choose the winners after 8am on September 2nd.

Fun Fact: We share an editor with Emma and Nicola and were so excited to meet them last spring at Atria! (We may have been fan-girling...sorry about that, ladies!)

Where to read more about Emma and Nicola: Their website, Twitter and Facebook.


EmmaNicola_MelanieDuneaGuilty pleasures?

NICOLA: HGTV.  I am obsessed with Rehab Addict, but on a bad night I can easily sit through a House Hunters marathon.  It’s like some part of me needs to know that if I’m evacuated to, say, Tucson, on a moment’s notice, I’ll already have my dream neighborhood mapped out.

EMMA: Beyonce concert footage on Youtube.  I reward myself with a number after every few pages of writing – and on rougher days, every few paragraphs.  (If her Superbowl Halftime show had been a tape I would have worn it out.)  Her swagger always recharges me.  We put our heroines through so much that I imagine them on the other side of their journeys, long after our stories are over, dancing their asses off to her and knowing how much stronger they are for what they learned.  I think we’ve referenced Queen B in at least three of our novels.

Song that you are slightly embarrassed to admit you know all the words to?

NICOLA: We Built This City on Rock and Roll.  We used it in our third bestseller, Dedication, and it has been stuck in our heads ever since.  Of course don’t get me started on Elmo Potty Time songs.  I will be whistling them in my grave.

EMMA: Go West’s King of Wishful Thinking from Pretty Woman.  Stu Ames dumped me a week before the movie came out and that song became my anthem for recovery. (The first of many anthems over the years.)  We didn’t have a Beyonce.  I honestly think my recovery time would have been halved with an iPod of her, Pink, Taylor Swift, Katie Perry and Kelly Clarkson.

Funny Mom Story?

NICOLA: A few night’s ago I was giving my three year-old daughter a bath and the Twitter app on my phone starts pinging like crazy.  My husband asks, do you need to get that?  I said, no, it’s probably just ____, she wants to wear my skin.  Then I go back to making ice cream out of soap bubbles, or whatever we were up to, and my daughter starts singing, “I’m wear-ing Mommy’s skin.  I’m wear-ing Mommy’s skin.”  I suppose since I dressed her up as Kathy Bates in Misery for Halloween one year I shouldn’t be that surprised.

Beauty Must-Haves?

EMMA: I’ve always had these tiny hairs at my hairline determined to lay diagonally across my forehead in an Adam’s Family-like fashion.  J-Lo rebranded them “baby hairs” and Anastasia Clear Brow Gel is the only product I’ve found to tame my babies.  I’ve also just started using a retinol product – Retrinal Plus 0.1 Cream.  It’s a low dose, but it’s rocking my world.  Since you asked, I’m currently in search of a product for lightening sun spots that doesn’t have scary hydroquinone and am taking any and all opportunities to put out an APB.  Please tweet suggestions to @nannydiaries!

Food/drink you couldn't live without?

NICOLA: I never drank caffeine before having kids, but now I need two extra hot lattes every day to function.  We spend a ridiculous amount of time every day talking about food—what we’re going to eat, when we’re going to eat, and why don’t we have more snacks.  We never have enough snacks.

Favorite curse word?

EMMA: As is evident from our heroines, Nicki and I never shied from employing a satisfying curse word in the face of our heroine’s crappy bosses, boyfriends, etc.  It was a huge adjustment for me when my son was born and I had to rein it in.  I’ve since reverted to using the first letter of each curse followed by “–ing.”  At first I felt like a dork but I’ve come to love it.  My favorite is F-ing, which has become more satisfying than the real word—except when I accidentally use it in grown up situations like a pitch meeting with industry folk in which case it does not inspire the confidence.

Secret Talent besides writing?

NICOLA: I am weirdly great at dog grooming.  And eyebrow tweezing.  Probably the same skill.  In college girls would come from all over campus to have me do their eyebrows.  I am probably a closet esthetician.

Pet Peeve?

EMMA: Manhattan rush hour is notoriously cut throat, but even so I was surprised to discover as a mom that there’s no such thing as Stroller Right of Way.  For example, Single Man with Briefcase should yield the sidewalk to Mom with Toddler Screaming Head Off About Fallen Animal Crackers.  Man with Briefcase should yield AND applaud mother with said toddler in one hand and Senile Dog Straining on Leash in other.  They should make street signs, pronto!

Thanks, Girls!