Interview with W. H. Manke

What's the story behind your latest book?
A beautiful painting of a ancient estate in the English countryside that I saw in a fine old hotel caused me to wonder about the people, the society and the conditions of that time in history. What hopes, dreams, virtues and vices made up the lives of those people? Consequently, I researched the years of early 1800. What I found captivated my imagination.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Three things associated with my writing give me pleasure. I love inventing stories. For me to create the characters and to plan the actions and background equals playing for fun. Seeing a completed a novel, short story or poem in print provides a great deal of enjoyment for me.
What do your fans mean to you?
I write for my fans and for pleasure. I believe my fans deserve the best I have to offer. Praise and encouragement from a fan for me is better than icing on a cake.
What are you working on next?
I have five novels ready to edit, format and publish as e-books. At this time I'm formatting "Beyond the Breaking Point". It is a crime novel and love story.
Who are your favorite authors?
Of the modern writers I love reading John Grisham's novels most. I am fascinated by Herman Melville's work and occasionally reach for one of his books on my shelf.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I called several cities and towns home during my childhood and teenage years.
Born in Breslau, now named Wroclaw in Poland, I have fond memories of my first four years of life. The next two years, as the war neared its end, showed me the worst and the best of humanity. Most of what I witnessed during that time I struggled for years to forget. Instead of experiencing the joy of beginning school I, with my mother and two younger sisters, fled from my birthplace for our lives. No doubt those experiences influenced my writing a great deal.
For several years after the war had ended I called a small city in Bavaria home. To our great happiness we were able to connect with most of our extended family again, but sadly my father who had been conscripted that last year of the war to defend the city, like many others, did not survive the war. School, new friends and playing soccer began to fill my life. I find I sometimes pattern a character in my stories after someone I came to know during that time.
After several years in Bavaria we moved to the north of Germany where my grandparents had settled. Here soccer and friends began to dominate my life. I dreamed of one day playing professionally, practiced for hours, became quite skillful and played the game like my life depended on each outcome. Both protagonists and antagonists in my stories tend to be skillful at one or more activities.
To my great disappointment my dream of playing professionally ended with my family's decision to emigrate to Canada. A town in central Alberta on the Prairies became my new home during my teenage years. To my chagrin no one played soccer, but I soon began to enjoy hockey baseball and driving a car. Those events also influenced my writing, and in several novels characters are involved in a sport.
Looking back I see two people in my life who had a profound influence on who I became and how I acquired my love for writing. Throughout all my childhood and early teen years my mother read to us fairy tales, poems and short stories. I used to love listening to her dramatize the literature she read to us. My maternal grandfather's humor and love for folks songs also provided unforgettable hours for me.
When did you first start writing?
The teachers of my secondary school English and Literature classes assigned numerous writing assignments eliciting many groans from the class. After writing a few essays and poems I found I enjoyed writing them. Hearing and reading my teachers praise my work encouraged me to keep writing for the enjoyment of it.
Published 2015-01-18.
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Books by This Author

Storms over Hawking Manor
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 100,110. Language: English. Published: October 15, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » Action, Fiction » Romance » Clean & wholesome
The Carstairs clan's one known enemy, Eugene, is condemned to a penal colony as a murderer, but his threats of revenge remain. On the voyage there it is reported he jumped overboard in the Indian Ocean. Unknown to the Carstairs others also plan revenge, robbery, kidnapping and murder against them. Will the Carstairs brothers be able to defend the family from the coming raging storms?
Beyond the Breaking Point
Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 130,230. Language: English. Published: July 10, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Action & suspense
It appeared Montgomery had everything a young man could wish for- good looks, talent a sweetheart and a bright future. On the day his future looked most promising he by chance became the lone witness to a brutal killing. Suddenly he was a hunted man with no place to hide. Eventually, the relentless attempts on his life by the killers and a crooked cop drove him beyond the breaking point.
Secrets of Hawking Manor
Price: $7.99 USD. Words: 190,520. Language: English. Published: December 29, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Adventure » Action
The Carstairs of Hawking Manor harbor secrets that time brings to light. But with the birth of the Carstairs brothers new secrets are born. Their struggles to manhood leads them to face many challenges and conflicts at home and on the untamed North American continent. Confronted by their greatest danger they must lay their differences aside, unite and become the brothers they were born to be.