An Interview of a Character in Penny Ehrenkranz's New Book
Welcome, fellow "ghost" writer, Penny Ehrenkranz to Writing with God's Hope blog. However, today, I won't be interviewing Penny. We wish to talk with the main character in her new book, Wendy Wiles.
Wendy, tell us a
little about yourself and your family.
I was born in Portland,
Oregon in 1983.When I was eleven, my mom and dad separated
for a while and we had to move to a small town thirty miles outside Portland.I was bummed since I had to leave all my
My dad stayed in Portland,
so my older brother Mike and I lived with our Mom.Mom’s a writer, but she wasn’t selling too
much.My brother is a pain. He teases me
a lot, but we eventually become close. My mom likes to say, “Wendy, darling,”
when she talks to me and that drives me crazy.I’m not some Peter Pan character.
I like to write and read poetry, so that makes me a little
weird I guess.
What was it like
moving from a big city to a rural community?Was it hard to make new friends?
I hated moving at first, but because I met Jennifer, it
wasn’t long before I felt good about it.Mom used say in the city Mike and I were little fish in a big pond, but
in Scappoose we were big fish in a little pond.We were able to play sports and do things we might not have been able to
do in the city where there were lots of kids wanting to do those things.Jennifer had a lot of friends and she
introduced me to them, but she and I were best friends.
What is your new
hometown and school like?
Scappoose is where I go to school. I actually live in Warren, which isn’t
really a town. Scappoose only has about 6,500 people.There aren’t very many stores and the library
is so tiny, not like the one in Portland.St. Helens
is the next town over. It’s the county seat and has over 12,000 people, and it
has a few more places to shop, so Mom goes there more often to get stuff for
Our school is small, too.There are only four classes for each grade. Jennifer is a grade behind
me in school, but we still see each other at lunch and recess times.Mike goes to the middle school, which is
right next door to PetersenSchool where I go.It’s different from Portland, but I like it. The teachers are
When did you first
realize your home was haunted?
The day we moved in and I met Jennifer, she told us a story
about her brother and some friends spending the night in our house when it was
empty. She said they heard a piano playing but no one was there.While she was telling us the story, a
windstorm blew through the porch where we were hiding from the rain.All of a sudden the leaves looked like two
people dancing and we heard this weird music.Then later in the house, I started seeing things.Crazy, huh?
What did you think
when you learned your friend’s family restaurant was also haunted?
This was much later after we figured out what was going on
at our house.Jennifer and her family
moved to California,
and Mike and I met the new folks who moved in down the road from us.They have a son, Jon. His family had read
about our ghost hunting, and his mom was really interested.She’s the one who told me they heard the
building they bought for their new restaurant was also haunted.It freaked me out at first because I was
pretty well done with ghosts by this time. Once we started helping out getting
the restaurant ready to open, Mike, Jon, and I all got curious and started
digging for clues to see what was going on.
Were you scared when
you found out you could see and communicate with ghosts?
You bet I was!I’d
get goose bumps whenever they came around or I saw them.I didn’t know what to expect. I eventually
figured out they wouldn’t hurt me, but they still scared me when they’d show
up. They just wanted someone to know what had happened to them and why they
How did you and your
friends solve the mystery of the ghosts?
We actually had a lot of help from the ghosts
themselves.We used the library to look
up stuff and followed clues the ghosts left for us.
What do you like to do
when you’re not chasing ghosts?
I love to read and write poetry.I even had one of my poems published in a
magazine.Even though my brother teases
me, we play together and with our friends.We like being outside.There’s
always something to do when you live in the country, like riding our bikes and
Wendy, thanks for
stopping by to visit with us.
Now, Penny, you tell us your point of view about Wendy's story.
attracts ghosts, first in Ghost for Rent,
when her parents separate and she, her brother, and mother move into a haunted
house. The story begins in Portland, Oregon and quickly moves to small town,
Scappoose, Oregon. Miserable at leaving her friends and beloved Portland
behind, Wendy meets her neighbor Jennifer who tells her the house Wendy’s mom
rented is haunted. After two of them appear to Wendy, the girls find themselves
tracking down the mystery of who the ghosts are and why they "live"
in the Wiles' home.
In Ghost for Lunch, Wendy’s friend,
Jennifer, moves away, leaving Wendy sad until new neighbors and their
restaurant in St. Helens bring ghosts back into Wendy's life. She, her brother,
and their new friend discover the two cases are connected. Once again, the
young sleuths use clues and lots of brainstorming to figure out who is haunting
While on the
surface, these two stories appear to be about ghosts and the mystery of solving
them, they are also about the importance of family and friends and working
together to solve a problem.
Lockwood (Ehrenkranz) has published over 100 articles, 75 stories, a chapbook,
and her stories have been included in two anthologies. She writes for both
adults and children. Her fiction has appeared in numerous genres and children’s
publications, and non‑fiction work has appeared in a variety of writing,
parenting, and young adult print magazines and on line publications.She is a former editor for MuseItUp
Publishing, 4RV Publishing, and Damnation Books.Visit her web site at http://
pennylockwoodehrenkranz.yolasite.com and her writing blog at http://pennylockwoodehrenkranz.blogspot.com/.
has joined her two middle grade novels (Ghost
for Rent and Ghost for Lunch) as Ghostly Visions. She recently released Boo’s Bad Day with 4RV Publishing
and has one other children’s picture book under contract with them: Many Colored Coats. She has three
romances published by MuseItUp
Publishing: Love Delivery, Lady in
Waiting, and Mirror, Mirror. Her
short story collection, A Past and A
Future, is available through Alban Lake
Publishing and Smashwords.
Oh, Penny, I'm so glad the two books are available for purchase now. They sound wonderful. I need to get mine.