Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Meet W.S Gager ~ From Newspaper Reporter to Mystery Writer

I'm pleased to bring you W.S Gager, former reporter, now mystery writer.
Please welcome Wendy and don't forget her excerpt from A Case of Volatile Deeds on Saturday

Thanks LA, it's a pleasure to be here with your readers today.

LA: Tell us about your current series.

WSG: My current series is the Mitch Malone Mysteries which is about an old-school reporter in a modern newspaper who doesn’t adapt to change. In the latest, A CASE OF VOLATILE DEEDS, Mitch stands up his date to cover an explosion only to discover the only victim is his love interest who has many secrets. As he works to get his date’s killer and earn a Pulitzer Prize, bodies keep showing up just like the puppy that appears on his door and has a knack for sniffing them out. His journey takes him out of the comfort of the police beat to the politics of city hall.

LA: Having achieved your goal to be a published author, what is the most rewarding thing?

WSG: It always amazes and delights me when people send me an email or post on Facebook that they loved a book I’ve written. My favorite comment was a reader who said they had figured it out and were wrong, but the ending made perfect sense in hindsight. Then I’ve done my job!

LA: Which aspect of writing do you love the best, and which do you hate the most?

WGS:  My favorite part of writing is the first draft. When I have an inkling of where the story is going and details nailed for about twenty pages. As I start to put that down, the characters begin to talk to me and take the story in totally different directions than I planned but they are great. When these creative ideas flow is when I’m the most geeked about the writing and don’t want to quit. (When laundry piles up, meals go unmade and my cleanliness is nonexistent.)

LA: What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?

WSG:  My first book in the Mitch Malone Mysteries called A CASE OF INFATUATION. I’ve improved my writing with each book but there is a special and magical moment when you first book winds down to the finish line and you type: “The End!” You realize after several stops and starts that you have actually finished your first book. You are an author. That is magic.

LA: Describe for us, if you will, your writing style, as in plotter vs. seat of the pants, and do you put more time into developing characters or plot or are they equal?

WSG:  As I mentioned above my favorite part of the writing is going off in odd directions. I am very much a seat of the pants writer. So much so that the villain I start off with in the beginning is usually killed about halfway through the book. I need to come up with an even more dastardly murderer. For me the characters are the key to the mystery. If you don’t have a good motivating factor for both the sleuth and the villain, the mystery falls flat. The characters could have a huge gun battle but it wouldn’t add anything to the book if the killer enjoyed killing with a knife. It just doesn’t fit and the readers figure that out.

LA: Key advice for other writers?

WSG: Just write! This advice seems so simple but in actually is very complicated. You need to keep putting words on the paper even on days you don’t feel like writing. You must keep trying. As a very dear friend says, “Keep on keeping on.”  Keep writing. You may never use what you struggle to put down at first but that will lead to some really great writing. You need to wade through a lot of flood waters until you get to a good piece of land.

LA: Do you have a day job, too?

WSG:  I do and I must admit it has been kicking my butt and creativity for the last couple of months. I coordinate an Early College program that allows high school juniors and seniors to become half time college students and delay their graduation by a year. After that fifth year of high school, they graduate with not only a high school diploma but also an associate’s degree. The best part is students don’t have to pay for it but their school district does. This is a new program and has had tons of work to get it up and started before school started. I love empowering motivated students to get ahead on their education. I just need to bottle their energy so I can write in the evenings.

LA, That sounds like an awesome program to be involved in. Do you have a view in your writing space? 

WSG: I do and it is of the third green and fourth tee of a golf course. I like playing golf but what I like even more is that the view is so green and natural and filled with wildlife including birds, foxes, deer and bunnies. There is always something interesting to see that inspires me to keep writing. The bad part is my son took my writing chair with him to college and I need to replace it.

LA: That's not so bad, a new chair is always good!


W.S. Gager has lived in Michigan for most of her life except when she was interviewing race car drivers or professional woman's 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. Since then she honed her skills on other forms of writing before deciding to do what she always wanted and write mystery novels. Her main character is Mitch Malone who is an edgy crime-beat reporter single-mindedly hunting for a Pulitzer Prize. A Case of Infatuation, the first in the Mitch Malone Mysteries, won the Dark Oak Contest in 2008 and nominated as a Michigan Notable Book.  A Case of Accidental Intersection took first place in the 2010 Public Safety Writers Contest in the unpublished category before its release. Her third book, A CASE OF HOMETOWN BLUES, was a finalist in the 2012 Daphne Du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. She loves to hear from readers at or on her blog at

Mitch Malone finally scores a weekend dinner with a cute receptionist, but true to his
reporter instincts, an explosion in a high rise office building makes him stand up his date as he runs for an exclusive. Mitch learns that much of what he knows about his date and her work aren’t what they seem. His world continues to twist when the police captain asks for his help and a city hall informant is found floating in the river. Mitch must keep his head down or a cute dog with a knack for finding dead bodies will be sniffing out his corpse.


Buy links:
Barnes and Noble

Social links:
Twitter: @wsgager
Don't forget the excerpt from A Case of Volatile Deeds on Saturday!  See you back here.



  1. Leslie Ann,
    Thank you so much for letting me share your day today. I absolutely love the press hat. It is a great addition!

  2. The hat was fun to put in.

    You have quite a busy life, it's amazing you can juggle it all.

    Can't wait until the excerpt is up.


  3. I enjoyed the interview, Wendy, learned a bit more about you too.
    Missed seeing you this year at PSWA--or anywhere for that matter

  4. Marilyn, thank you for stopping by. I missed going to PSWA too. I need to make a tour through California conferences to see people. So many more events in your neighborhood than mine!