Author's Interview With Ian T Gwilliams

Ian
First, before we move forward with our Author's Interview, I would like to start with an introduction.

1. Could you please introduce yourself to us? 
Hello. I was born in Liverpool, England, 62 years ago, and I've been married to my wife Jane for 40 years, we have two grown up children. I'm a retired blue collar worker and I served an apprenticeship at Rolls-Royce Motors, Crewe, where I was involved in building bespoke motor cars for the British Royal family and also armoured limousines for foreign dignitaries. After twenty years of service, I then went to live and work in Canada for a short while, before returning to England and then on into the aerospace industry at Airbus, before finally retiring in 2019. My hobbies include golf, lots of reading, walking, cycling and model making, plus a fascination with all things concerning World War 2 historical facts. My favourite authors include Damien Lewis, Stephen E. Ambrose and James Holland.

2. Congratulations on your book. So what inspired you to write this book?
My influences for writing come from watching classic WW2 films like The Longest Day, A Bridge Too Far, Where Eagles Dare and Saving Private Ryan, plus the Band of Brothers TV series. I enjoy reading many historical factual books about the period. Another influence was that I visited the battlefields and cemeteries of the D-Day landings in Normandy, where I was greatly moved as I walked amongst the graves of the fallen heroes that lie there. I have also done some battlefield tours, including the route of The Battle of the Bulge through Belgium.

3. What is the book all about? 
March 1944, Germany is losing the war. Nazi scientists are constructing a deadly weapon in a secret laboratory under the guidance of the SS. Ahron Roth, commander of U-931 fears for the fate of Germany, the devastation that will come with the upcoming allied invasion. He's ordered back early from patrol to Saint-Nazaire and taken to the Reichstag in Berlin. Roth, born in Germany, but raised in America and speaks perfect English is ordered on a special mission, one that will change the war back in Germany's favour. The plan, is to take two SS officers, Fuchs and Vogel, in U-931, together with a ‘dirty (black) bomb’ and deploy it in Washington D.C. The ‘dirty bomb’ is part of a deception as it will be simultaneously detonated alongside three V1 rockets, launched on the capital from modified type XX1 U-boats, located off the eastern seaboard. The Nazi’s beleave they can dupe America into beleaving Germany can launch a nuclear strike on the U.S and this will stop the invasion or change the terms of surrender. Himmler is overseeing the operation, but is distancing himself. He is considering other types of attack on America, believing that Germany can launch their own ‘Pearl Harbour.’

4. Why did you choose this genre for your book? 
The saying that if you write a book, write one about something you know, is oh so true. I've had a passion for the conflict since I was a teenager, so I had a depth of knowledge about the subject, and as I began to write, the research involved made my hunger for more became even stronger. I really enjoyed writing my first novel, and have started on the sequel.

5. How much time did it take to complete this book?
I began writing it during the first lock down in England. All in all, it took me about six months.

6. What makes your Book Special? 
There are many fiction books out there covering the time period, where mine is different, is that I've put a different slant on things, asking many questions throughout the novel. The reader will ask themselves, what if; what if Hitler had used his super weapons more wisely, or God forbid, the Nazi's had developed the atomic bomb first. The war may have turned out differently for example, if the D-Day invasion had been pushed back into the sea.

7. When is your second book coming?
Hopefully by this summer. It's half way done.

8. While writing did you get any writer's block? What is the Tip that you will give others who are facing writer's block?
I never have. The story from start to finish is in my head, and I sit down and write, it either flows or doesn't. What I do find is that I take breaks of a day or so from writing, that way I am not overwhelmed, and I don't have a deadline, so I can go at my own pace. Don't think to yourself that it must be done, I must write something today, you're just putting yourself under unnecessary pressure.

9. What are your other hobbies besides being a talented author?
I have a golf handicap of 11 and play 3 times a week. I read everyday, go for walks with my wife and eat out. I also have a passion for building scale models from kits.

10. Last but not the least, How did you feel, while giving this interview? 
It was my pleasure, and if I can give someone out there who is considering writing their first novel the inspiration to do so, then that's great. I say, go for it, you won't regret it. The greatest pleasure I've had, from writing, is when someone comes up to me and says, I really enjoyed your book.

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