Thursday, November 29, 2012

Mystery We Write Tour: W.S. Gager

Award-winning mystery author W.S. Gager has lived in Michigan for most of her life except when she was interviewing race car drivers or professional women golfers. She enjoyed the fast-paced life of a newspaper reporter until deciding to settle down and realized babies didn't adapt well to running down story details on deadline. Her main character, Mitch Malone, is an edgy crime-beat reporter always on the hunt for the next Pulitzer and won't let anyone stop him. Her third book, A Case of Hometown Blues, was a finalist in the 2012 Daphne Du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. A Case of Volatile Deeds, her her fourth in the Mitch Malone series, will be released in February. Find out more about Gager at her blog at this link.

Do you have a "day job?" What is it and how do you write around it?
My day job is teaching developmental English classes at a local college. I teach reading and writing to people who want to attend college but their skills aren’t up to standards where they will be successful in higher education. My day job is intensely satisfying when I see adults realize they can accomplish their educational goals even if they had bad experiences with school while a teenager. The bad part of my job is that I have to read endless drafts of essays that sap my writing creativity. To combat that, I try to do my writing in the early morning hours and wait until the evening to correct papers.

What mysteries or strange occurrences in your real life have inspired your writing life?
I don’t have many “real” life mysteries. What I have is normal things that happen every day and my brain twists them and turns them into clues. I always see things and say, “I have to remember that.” I see a mother struggling to put a reluctant child in a car seat and I note the car make and model. After hearing the news, I imagine myself providing the needed clue to the police because I was a careful observer of a license plate to a kidnapping. I do this multiple times a day. I turn everything into a mystery or a clue to solving one. Many never make the pages of my books but I can’t help myself.

How has your writing been received by family and friends?
My friends are all waiting for me to be a bestselling author so they can cash in by selling off bar napkins I’ve used. The others keep asking when the next book is done like I can turn one out every week to keep them satisfied. As for my family, my mom is a huge supporter and always has been. She read one of my first attempts at a novel and wasn’t very impressed. She purchased A Case of Infatuation and then told me she loved it and it was so much more improved, she couldn’t believe it. She now does some editing for me. My father is an avid reader of science fiction. He is an Alan Dean Foster fan. He hasn’t read them or if he has, he hasn’t shared his opinion even though last Christmas my brothers and I gave him a Kindle. I preloaded all my books on it for him. He has no idea who Mitch Malone is. He still has boxes of sci-fi paperbacks in the basement and just keeps reading those.

Leave a comment below to win a copy of one of the books in the Mitch Malone series. Winners will be announced on Dec. 11. Check out my guest post on Marilyn Meredith's blog today at this link where I interview the protagonist, Irène Laureux, of my novels Conquering Venus and Remain In Light.

9 comments:

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Hi, Wendy, I am always glad for the chance to know more about you. This was a terrific interview. Good questions, Collin, and isn't fun that everyone has such different answers?

WS Gager said...

Collin: Thanks so much for giving me great questions. The first one I used to develop my education philosophy for the college. By the way, congrats on the award nominations. That is huge praise.
Wendy

WS Gager said...

Marilyn: These questions only prove how very different we all are but that we love a great mystery. Hopefully readers will like the diversity and buy everyone's books!
Wendy
I can hope right?

Jean Henry Mead said...

Great interview and I love the humor as well as your books, Wendy.

WS Gager said...

Jean: Life is too rough without a good sense of humor. Thanks for stopping by.
Wendy
W.S. Gager on Writing

Collin Kelley said...

Thanks to everyone who left a comment today!

Jake said...

Humor rules which is reflected in your writing. Thanks for interesting post.

Jake said...

Humor rules which is reflected in your writing. Thanks for interesting post.

WS Gager said...

Jake Thanks for following along. The tour has been great fun hasn't it?
Wendy
W.S. Gager on Writing

Collin Kelley: Modern Confessional

Welcome to Collin Kelley: Modern Confessional, the website for poet, novelist, playwright and journalist Collin Kelley.