Friday, July 6, 2012

Meet Pete Abela: Author of Wings #AuthorInterview

Today, I'm happy to present Pete Abela, the author of Wings, a charming multi-generation tale about the love of flying.

Hi Pete, welcome to Rachelle's Window. Please tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m an author from the city of Wollongong, just south of Sydney in the state of New South Wales, Australia.
For most of my adult life I’ve worked in IT, but my love of reading eventually led me to take up writing. Having surprised myself and those around me by getting Wings published, I’m now having fun dreaming up marketing strategies and publicity stunts – tasks I never could have envisaged doing a few years ago. I continue to stretch the boundaries of my right hemisphere and am now working to complete a second novel.
My left brain hasn’t been totally neglected through this process. I work as an IT Manager in order to help keep my wife and four kids fed and clothed. When I’m not working, reading, writing or enjoying the company of my family, I like to sneak away for a bit of exercise – either tennis, soccer or a run.

Working in IT must give you a lot of insight into the minds of frustrated people. What inspired you to write Wings

Although Wings is a novel, I did draw inspiration from two men I greatly admire. The first is my grandfather who was a fighter pilot during World War II; the other is my younger brother who is a commercial pilot with a major Australian airline.

I consider them both to have lived through fascinating, unusual and difficult circumstances and I thought I could draw on and extend some of their experiences as the basis for this novel.

What is your favorite part of your book?  Why?

I really enjoyed writing the story of Walt’s wedding. He was given a 48 hour leave pass to get married, although more than a quarter of the time would be spent travelling. Heavy snow held up the train and it began to look as if he would not make it home. Given Walt was about to be posted overseas for twelve months, these few hours with his sweetheart were very important.

I enjoyed this because of the contrast between the situation faced by Walt and the relative luxury and freedom we enjoy today.

That's so true. I am thankful every time I go to the grocery store thinking about what my mother endured as a child during World War II. What are your strengths as a writer? What do you feel you do well?

I write in a lean and uncluttered style which makes my books easy to read and digest. I am also able to craft natural sounding dialogue and keep my stories moving at a nice pace.

The downside of my lean style is that I sometimes fail to impart sufficient descriptive text which can make it hard for the reader to imagine either the setting or the physical actions and reactions of my characters. This is one of the main things I focus on when I edit. I’m always asking myself, “What expressions / movements would the character make in that situation?” and “Do I have sufficient information to enable the reader to picture the scene?”

That's what editing and revision is all about! So, what do you want your readers to gather from your novel?

One of the key themes of the novel is the focus required to achieve major goals. There are at least two elements required to achieve anything worthwhile. The first is a clear vision of your destination, and the second is incredible tenacity and a willingness to think outside the square in order to overcome the obstacles which will inevitably arise.

Are you similar to your book characters, always doing whatever you can to make your dreams come true?

In many ways, yes. One of my dreams was to become an author so I’m very pleased that Wings has been published. That has been a dream for a number of years. More generally, I’m interested in goals and dreams, the best way to decide which dreams to chase, and the best techniques to pursue them. I often write about this at my blog (

I love chasing dreams. Of course I always dream bigger so I never attain it. But it's the journey, right? 


It's been great talking to you. Can you tell us how to connect with you?

Name of Book:  Wings
Where can readers buy it?
- Paperback from CreateSpace

Genre:  Historical Fiction
Format:  ebook or paperback

Author Name: Pete Abela
Twitter: @PeteAbela

"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.


  1. Hi Rachelle, Thanks again for interviewing me. I had a great time. If your readers would like to ask any other questions I'd be happy to answer them.

  2. Hey Pete, you're welcome. I did tweet your interview and added it to Triberr, so hopefully we'll get more hit! have a great weekend!