The Elegant Variation has a short but sweet interview with John McNally, author of America's Report Card:
Q: Your family background is working-class suburban Chicago. What has this meant for your writing?
A: I have a good work ethic. Growing up in a working-class environment also helped put my life into perspective. My father was a roofer. He’d get up at four a.m. to drive across the city to some job and wouldn’t get home until past dinnertime. I’m a lucky s.o.b. I roll out of bed whenever I want and then sit in front of a computer most of the day, taking long breaks with no one looking over my shoulder. I know better than to complain about the difficulty of writing. Yes, writing a novel is hard, but it sure as hell beats standing on a roof on a day when it’s over a hundred degrees and breathing in fumes from hot tar. A few days of that kind of work would cure any writer who whines about his job.