Tell us about the inspiration for your book – especially the main character, Sergeant Major Crane.
When I was considering writing a crime book, my husband and I discussed what could make my detective stand out from others and so, taking the old adage, write about what you know, we decided the lead character would be a detective with the Special Investigations Branch in the British Army and posted at Aldershot Garrison, where we used to live. My husband served 22 years in the British Army and was based for a time in Aldershot. The character of Sgt Major Crane is drawn from soldiers I have met and my imagination.
Who are some of your favorite authors? What genres do you gravitate toward?
Obviously I gravitate towards crime and thrillers. Ian Rankin is right up there as well as Lee Child and Stephen King.
Has writing always been a part of your life?
My working life has always in some ways been connected to writing. I worked in PR and marketing and wrote and edited a corporate in house newspaper. After having my children I went to University as a mature student and trained as a teacher. Within the degree were strands on Creative Writing and that got me writing children’s stories.
Are you a panster or a plotter?
Very definitely a plotter. I read a book by Elizabeth George the author of the Inspector Lindley books and she detailed how she wrote her books. This method definitely works for me. I plot the story arc first and then take each chapter in turn, writing down what needs to happen in each chapter to move the story forward. Once this is done I then start to write each chapter and scene, by visualising the story in my head. Sometimes the characters do and say what I thought they would, and sometimes they don’t and take over!
What are you working on now?
At the moment I am editing the second Sgt Major Crane Novel, 40 Days and 40 Nights. It was originally planned that Aldershot Garrison would host a Team GB Training Camp for their preparations for the 2012 Olympic Games. However, in 2010 the venue was changed to Loughborough University. This is the story of what could have happened if Team GB and then the Paralympians had held their Training Camp on Aldershot Garrison. Sgt Major Crane suspects there could be a terrorist cell on the Garrison, but no one believes him, of course!
I am in the planning stages of a third novel which deals with the issue of military rape. Both will be published in 2012.
Wendy is married with two grown-up children and and has been a school teacher and worked in sales, marketing, and publishing in her career. As a teacher, she frequently wrote children’s stories for use in the classroom. While in PR, she wrote press releases and wrote and gave presentations at Media Launches and Sales Conferences. She also wrote and was Editor of a corporate in-house magazine. She is now retired and lives on the Costa del Sol in Spain dreaming up new mysteries for Sgt Major Crane.
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