As a Canadian, MIKE MACDONALD is used to ruminating endlessly over simple everyday decisions, such as putting milk or cream in his morning cup of coffee, whether to take the train or the bus, and just how badly this sweater needs a wash. Basically, he was born to write choose-your-own-path books, at least as long as they completely avoid adventure.
Mike attended graduate school at the London School of Economics, where he wrote his dissertation on the political relevance of satirical news. Upon graduating, he took an editorial internship at America’s Finest News Source, The Onion, or as his parents called it, the least practical option available. He continued to work as a contributing writer for The Onion for the next four years.
Mike has written and produced a sketch comedy television show with one of the largest networks in Canada, launched a Canadian satirical news site, The Smew, and worked as a journalist for the largest newspaper chain in Canada. Because all these things happened in Canada, of course, you’ve never heard about them.
Born in Minnesota, a.k.a. “The Canada of the United States,” JILLY GAGNON has always preferred her adventures in book form…and preferably not that adventurous. The consummate “indoor kid,” Jilly always knew she was destined for the one career that sounds risky but never forces you to travel anywhere more terrifying than a Wiki-wormhole: writing.
In the past, Jilly has written humor, news, essays, and op-ed pieces for Newsweek, Elle, Vanity Fair, The Huffington Post, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, The Onion, The Toast, and Boston’s alt-weekly, The Dig, among others. Her debut young adult novel, #famous, is forthcoming from HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen in 2017.
Jilly graduated from Harvard University in 2006, and currently lives in Chicago. She often carries on far-too-involved conversations with her cats.
Jilly and Mike started working together back when he was desperate for American talent for his Canadian rag and begged her to help him. They’ve been writing humor together ever since.