Author Interview & Book Giveaway: Wings by Pete Abela

Welcome to Author Pete Abela 

Pete is an author from the city of Wollongong, just south of Sydney in the state of New South Wales, Australia.
For most of his adult life, Pete has been a left-brained computer scientist whose love of reading eventually led him to take up writing. Having surprised himself and those around him by getting Wings published, he’s now having fun dreaming up marketing strategies and publicity stunts – tasks he never could have envisaged doing ten years ago. He continues to stretch the boundaries of his right hemisphere and is now working to complete a second novel.
His left brain hasn’t been totally neglected through this process. Pete works as an IT Manager in order to help keep his wife and four kids fed and clothed. When he’s not working, reading, writing or enjoying the company of his family, Pete likes to sneak away for a bit of exercise – either tennis, soccer or a laborious run.
You can find more about Pete at his website and blog ( The blog contains a number of really bad jokes. You have been warned.


Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.

Wings, inspired by the lives of two men I admire, is a feel-good novel containing in-depth insights into aviation, World War II and a love story to boot.

What was your favorite book when you were a child/teen?

As a child, I loved reading the Biggles series by Capt. W.E. Johns. As a teenager, the Hobbit was probably one of my favourite books.

What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?

Getting a professional opinion on your work can help you short-circuit months or even years of wasted effort. A few simple tips can help you make the transition from ‘gifted amateur’ to ‘published professional’.

What is your favorite Quote?

‘My life has been full of terrible misfortunes most of which never happened.’ – Michel de Montaigne
It reminds me not to spend too much time worrying about future events.

Who are your favorite authors of all time?

It’s hard to come up with a short list, but my physical book shelf is full of (in alphabetical order) Jeffrey Archer, Desmond Bagley, Bernard Cornwell, Michael Crichton, Dick Francis, John Grisham, Arthur Hailey, Louis L’Amour, Alistair McLean, JRR Tolkein and Jules Verne to name but a few. It’s a very full shelf.

How do you react to a bad review?

I’ve never had a bad review. In fact, I’ve never had a review of any sort. This whole, being a published author thing, is a brand new experience for me. I tell myself that I can’t expect to please everyone so the occasional negative review goes with the territory. In reality, I’m sure I’ll be disappointed but I’ll be trying my best not to get defensive. Breathe.

If you could have a signed copy of any novel what would it be and why?

Biggles and the Deep Blue Sea by Capt. W.E. Johns. I have 91 of the Biggles books and need less than ten more to complete the set. Alas, the remaining ones are rare and very expensive. Only one edition of Biggles and the Deep Blue Sea was ever published, making it the Holy Grail for Biggles Collectors. A copy usually sells for $2,000 or more on the odd occasion that it gets listed. I couldn’t imagine what a signed copy would be worth.

What do you do in your free time?

Writing-related matters consume a lot of my spare time. With a wife and four children, I spend lots of time enjoying their company too. I like to exercise, and play soccer, tennis and go for occasional jogs. I don’t watch very much TV.

Give us a glimpse into a typical day in your life starting when you wake up till you lie down again.

Awake at 6AM and off for a run. I usually push the pram and take one of the infants with me. Home by 6:30 and eat breakfast, read the paper and catch up on overnight emails. Shower, make lunches and then it’s off to work. I usually spend half an hour at lunch-time on writing-related activities (writing, editing or publicity). I usually get home from work at about 5:30PM and it’s a crazy couple of hours of dinner, baths and bed-time for the littlies. Once they’re in bed, I usually spend an hour talking to my wife or older kids, an hour or so writing and then I head to bed. Fifteen minutes of reading helps me relax before lights out.

Print or Ebook?

Until three months ago I would have replied with an unequivocal ‘Print’. However, I received a Kindle for my birthday and I love it. Ebook it is. Besides, my book shelves are too full to deal with any new print books.

Summer or Winter?

Summer. The Illawarra region where I live has beautiful beaches, warm weather and plenty of scope for numerous activities.

Spontaneity or Planning Ahead?

I’m a planner from way-back. One of the exceptions to this is my writing which exhibits a combination of these traits. I normally start a novel by writing off the top of my head. However, I can only sustain this for a certain time (usually ten thousand words or so) at which point I have to sit down and plan out the remainder of the novel.

Do you prefer a bunch of small gifts or one big expensive one?

My tastes are relatively simple and I always struggle to nominate a preferred gift. I usually end up nominating a bunch of small gifts – preferably encompassing a pile of books.

Wings – Brief Synopsis

“Wings” tells the story of Walt and his grandson Scott, who both have a fierce longing to fly albeit in vastly different circumstances. Walt – who grew up in the depression – found out first hand that becoming a pilot takes sacrifice and tenacity. When World War II broke out he pestered the RAF for eighteen months before they finally accepted him. Scott spent his childhood listening to tales of his Grandfather’s aerial exploits and developed an intense craving to be a pilot. However, the number of people wanting to be a pilot vastly outweighs the limited opportunities on offer.
“Wings” weaves together two tales: one set in war-torn northern England, and the other set in the modern-day Illawarra region of New South Wales. As Scott progresses, his grandfather declines – Walt loses his wife, his sight and his hearing – but throughout these difficulties is still there to offer support and encouragement. With insights into the modern aviation scene and life in the Royal Air Force of World War II, this is a must for anyone who has an interest in history, aviation or simply an old fashioned love story. 

Giveaway Details:
1 ebook of Wings
Ends 6/15/12

a Rafflecopter giveaway