W. S. Gager, A Case of Infatuation
Marilyn: I met Wendy Gager at the last PSWA Conference. She's a member and also published by Oak Tree Press like I am. So glad to have the opportunity to find out more about you.
Wendy: Thanks Marilyn. I did enjoy meeting you and am so jealous that you are techno savvy with your Kindle and texting, twittering and facebooking with your phone. I only just started texting and no e-reader yet.
Marilyn: What brought you to PSWA in the first place?
Wendy: My publisher, Billie Johnson, suggested all her writers should go to the PSWA conference because it was a great way to network, gain great info and met other Oak Tree Press authors. My Publisher was not wrong about all the useful information. I joined because of the conference but have really enjoyed meeting all the people. It is a great group and so diverse and willing to help each other -- A wealth of information from police techniques to getting published.
Marilyn: Tell me a little bit about your background.
Wendy: Being an author is my third career. All my careers involved some type of writing but producing books is where my heart is. My first career was after I studied journalism then worked in various newspapers for a dozen or so years which is where a lot of the background information for my Mitch Malone character comes from.
Then I was married and had children and turned my writing into public relations projects and speech writing that I could do around my children's schedules. I have always loved to write it just took several years to get the nerve to finish a novel from the dozen I had started over the years, which brings me to my third career that I love. It doesn't seem like work when I'm working on a book. (Okay, maybe those final edits are a bit of work:) )
Marilyn: When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer?
Wendy: I think I have always been a writer. I was first recognized for those skills when I was named the editor of the eighth grade class newspaper and wrote an editorial about capital punishment. I have always made my living by writing but it has mostly been in nonfiction. About four years ago, I couldn't ignore the crazy characters in my brain that wanted out so I turned to fiction and am loving it. I have found my love.
Marilyn: Tell me about your book (s) and the process of getting it (them) published.
Wendy: My first book, A Case of Infatuation, came out last June. It was published through Oak Tree Press after I won the 2008 Dark Oak Contest sponsored by the publisher. It wasn't the normal, query and wait strategy. I entered to get some feedback because I didn't know what else to do to the book and main character, Mitch Malone. Turns out it didn't need much.
Marilyn: What kind of things have you done to promote it--and what seems to work best for you?
Wendy:I do the best when I am out talking to people. I was handicapped when the book first came out because I only had a dial up connection to the internet and it would take hours to simply log into Facebook.
This fall, the world wide web finally got to rural West Michigan and I had internet available at an affordable price. Now I am trying to catch up to all things internet. I started a blog on New Year's Eve at http://www.wsgager.blogspot.com and am enjoying talking about writing. Check it out.
Marilyn: Where can we purchase your book?
Wendy: My books are very available from electronically on the Kindle to ordering the pages on websites such as amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Oak Tree. They also are in some Barnes and Noble bookstores and can be ordered there as well. I also carry a box around in my trunk so if you see me at the grocery store, I'd be happy to autograph one for you!
Marilyn: What's in the works now?
Wendy:I just finished the final edits for my second book in the Mitch Malone Mystery series. It was the editing project that never ended but am really happy with it now. It needed a lot of work and I ended up totally rewriting most of it. I am just waiting for a cop friend to make sure my technical details are accurate and off it goes to the publisher. I think it is slated for a June release.
Marilyn: Thank you so much for allowing me to ask you all these questions.
Wendy:Thank you Marilyn for all you do for the conference. You book the greatest speakers. I am still hoping things in my life will settle down and I can make the conference!
Marilyn: For anyone else who'd like to join us at the conference, for details, go to http://www.publicsafetywriter.com