Author Revealed

About Brendan McNally

Q. What is your birthdate?

A. 3/2

Q. Previous occupations

A. journalist, merchant seaman, bookstore manager,  clam and oyster shucker, crab cooker,

Q. Favorite job

A. defense reporter

Q. High school and/or college

A. Walter Johnson High School, Bethesda MD, North Carolina School of the Arts, Winston Salem NC, University of Texas at Dallas

Q. Name of your favorite composer or music artist?

A. Cab Calloway

Q. Favorite television show

A. Maverick

Revealing Questions

Q. How would you describe your life in only 8 words?

A. It's not an adventure, it's a job.

Q. What is your motto or maxim?

A. Never let the facts get in the way of a good story!

Q. How would you describe perfect happiness?

A. Having my daughter running up to me yelling ""Dadda!"

Q. What’s your greatest fear?

A. Becoming a Hack

Q. If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?

A. Right here in Dallas is fine to be honest, though I'm starting to miss Prague

Q. With whom in history do you most identify?

A. Either Mel Blanc or Groucho Marx

Q. Which living person do you most admire?

A. Lou Reed

Q. What are your most overused words or phrases?

A. Gauleiter, quadruplet, goat glands, Jeste jedno kaficko, a sodovku, prosim

Q. What do you regret most?

A. not joining the foreign legion

Q. If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?

A. dancing

Q. What is your greatest achievement?

A. Getting publicly denounced at a banquet by the Vice Chief of Naval Operations (surface warfare) who didn't realize I was there

Q. What’s your greatest flaw?

A. Disorganization

Q. What’s your best quality?

A. Endless curiosity

Q. If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?

A. A Turtle

Q. What trait is most noticeable about you?

A. My sense of humor

Q. Who is your favorite fictional hero?

A. George Smiley

Q. Who is your favorite fictional villain?

A. Sylvester

Q. If you could meet any historical character, who would it be and what would you say to him or her?

A. I would love to meet Charlemagne so I could tell him; "Ultimately you were successful. It just took a lot longer than you thought."

Q. What is your biggest pet peeve?

A. Bullies, know-it-alls, Alpha-dogs, bad tippers

Q. What is your favorite occupation, when you’re not writing?

A. Cooking, drawing, raking leaves,

Q. What’s your fantasy profession?

A. Producer for This American Life

Q. What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?

A. Kindness, trustworthiness, finishing what you start

Q. If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?

A. Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Q. What are your 5 favorite songs?

A. Friend of the Devil, Vaseline Machine Gun, Beware Brother Beware, Wild Horses, Fairytale of New York

Q. How did you come to write Germania?

A. After bombing out of Art School, I went to work on a tugboat hauling oil rigs around the Gulf of Mexico. It left me a lot of time of read and during that time I read Inside the Third Reich by Albert Speer. It was all extremely interesting, but what put the hook in me was his description of being in Flensburg in the days immediately after the fighting had stopped. In particular Speer mentioned two very bizarre things: how he and Werner Baumbach planned to take a flying boat and fly away to Greenland where they would hunt walrus, and fish and write their memoirs together. Speer also mentioned having the United States Strategic Bombing Survey come visit him and how they staged a faux-collegial "University of Bombing" in order to get him to spill his guts about how he kept the German war maching working despite all the unending Allied bombing campaigns. This put the hook in me and I decided to learn all I could about this very oddball moment in history.

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