About Author

Deb McEwan

Deb McEwan
  • Writing:

    Supernatural Suspense Action & Adventure Historical Fiction Women's Fiction Teen & Young Adult Children's
  • Country: Welsh
  • Books: 19
  • Profession: Author, former soldier
  • Born: 8 March
  • Member Since: Mar 2017
  • Profile Views: 15,424
  • Followers: 36
  • Visit author: Website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Amazon, Pinterest,
BIOGRAPHY

Following a career of over thirty years in the British Army, Deb and her husband moved to Cyprus to become weather refugees.

She's written children's books about 'Jason the Penguin' and Barry the reindeer (Reindeer Dreams) and 'The Island Dog Squad' series which is suitable for teens and adults. Books for more mature readers include the afterlife, and soldier series, and Deb's stand-alone novel about netball players.

The latest book is a joint project, recently published. 'Zak, My Boy Wonder' is written from a mother's point of view. It's the true story of her son's abandonment by the military authorities, the fight for his survival against all odds, and acceptance in a society obsessed by perfection.

The first book in the 'Unlikely Soldiers' series is set in nineteen seventies Britain. The second covers the early eighties. 'Friends and Revenge' is the third in the series, and takes a sinister turn of events. Book four is currently a work in progress.

In 'Court Out (A Netball Girls' Drama)' Marsha Lawson is desperate to keep the past buried and to forge a brighter future. But she's not the only one with secrets. When two players want revenge, a Tsunami of emotions is released at a tournament leaving destruction in its wake. As the wave starts spreading throughout the team, can Marsha and the others escape its deadly grasp, or will their emotional baggage pull them under, with devastating consequences for their families and teammates?

'Beyond Possession', book four in the Afterlife series is a fast-paced supernatural thriller involving child possessions, reincarnations and telepathic twins, with angels trying to keep the Devil and his evils at bay.

'The Island Dog Squad' is a series of novellas inspired by the rescue dog adopted by Deb and Allan. The real Sandy is a sensitive soul, not quite like her fictional namesake, and the other characters are based on Sandy's real-life mates.

Deb spends her time writing, hanging out with Allan and Sandy, and avoiding housework.

Deb McEwan Books

Book
Unlikely Soldiers Book One: (Civvy to Squaddie)
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Unlikely Soldiers Book One: (Civvy to Squaddie)by Deb McEwanPublish: Nov 04, 2015Series: Unlikely SoldiersContemporary Romance Historical Fiction Women's Fiction Teen & Young Adult
Unlikely Soldiers Book One (Civvy to Squaddie): (A coming of age novel about life, love and friendship)
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Unlikely Soldiers Book One (Civvy to Squaddie): (A coming of age novel about life, love and friendship)by Deb McEwanPublish: Nov 04, 2015Series: Unlikely SoldiersAction & Adventure Historical Fiction
Unlikely Soldiers Book Two: (Secrets & Lies)
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Unlikely Soldiers Book Two: (Secrets & Lies)by Deb McEwanPublish: May 13, 2016Series: Unlikely SoldiersAction & Adventure Historical Fiction Women's Fiction
Beyond Death: The Afterlife Series Book 1: (A British Supernatural Mystery and Suspense Novel)
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Beyond Death: The Afterlife Series Book 1: (A British Supernatural Mystery and Suspense Novel)by Deb McEwanPublish: Jun 12, 2014Series: AfterlifeSupernatural Suspense
Beyond Possession: The Afterlife Series Book 4: (A Supernatural Mystery Novel)
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Beyond Possession: The Afterlife Series Book 4: (A Supernatural Mystery Novel)by Deb McEwanPublish: Feb 13, 2018Series: The Afterlife SeriesThrillers Suspense Mysteries Supernatural Suspense Fantasy
The Island Dog Squad: (Book 1: Sandy's Story)
(1) $2.99kindle Free with KU DEAL ends on Mar 31, 2020eBook,
The Island Dog Squad: (Book 1: Sandy's Story)by Deb McEwanPublish: Jul 19, 2018Series: The Island Dog SquadTeen & Young Adult
The Island Dog Squad: (Book 2: Another Crazy Mission)
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The Island Dog Squad: (Book 2: Another Crazy Mission)by Deb McEwanPublish: Aug 03, 2018Series: The Island Dog Squad
The Island Dog Squad: (Book 3: People Problems): An Animal Cozy Mystery
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The Island Dog Squad: (Book 3: People Problems): An Animal Cozy Mysteryby Deb McEwanPublish: Dec 11, 2018Series: The Island Dog SquadTeen & Young Adult
Jason the Penguin: (He Learns to Swim)
$2.99kindleeBook,
Jason the Penguin: (He Learns to Swim)by Deb McEwanPublish: May 29, 2019Series: Jason the PenguinChildren's
Zak, My Boy Wonder
$4.99kindleeBook,
Zak, My Boy Wonderby Deb McEwan and Joanne LythgoePublish: Nov 01, 2019Parenting
Unlikely Soldiers Book Two:: (Secrets & Lies)
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Unlikely Soldiers Book Two:: (Secrets & Lies)by Deb McEwanPublish: May 13, 2016Series: Unlikely SoldiersAction & Adventure Historical Fiction Women's Fiction
Unlikely Soldiers Book Three: (Friends & Revenge)
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Unlikely Soldiers Book Three: (Friends & Revenge)by Deb McEwanPublish: Oct 29, 2016Series: Unlikely SoldiersAction & Adventure Historical Fiction Women's Fiction
(1) $3.99kindle Free with KUeBook,
Beyond Death: The Afterlife Series Book 1: (A Modern Ghost Story)by Deb McEwanPublish: Jun 12, 2014Series: The Afterlife SeriesSupernatural Suspense Paranormal Romance Women's Fiction
Beyond Life (The Afterlife Series Book 2)
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Beyond Life (The Afterlife Series Book 2)by Deb McEwanPublish: Oct 11, 2014Series: The Afterlife SeriesSupernatural Suspense
Beyond Destiny (The Afterlife Series Book 3)
eBook,
Beyond Destiny (The Afterlife Series Book 3)by Deb McEwanPublish: Feb 07, 2015Series: The Afterlife Series
Court Out: (A Netball Girls' Drama)
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Court Out: (A Netball Girls' Drama)by Deb McEwanPublish: Jul 26, 2017Action & Adventure Women's Fiction Teen & Young Adult
An Alien's Guide to the Human Species (Aliens Guide Book 1)
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An Alien's Guide to the Human Species (Aliens Guide Book 1)by Deb McEwanPublish: Jan 06, 2014Series: Aliens GuideScience Fiction
Aliens the Sequel:  True Colours (Aliens Guide Book 2)
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Aliens the Sequel: True Colours (Aliens Guide Book 2)by Deb McEwanPublish: Jan 06, 2014Series: Aliens GuideScience Fiction
Jason the Penguin: (He's Different)
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Jason the Penguin: (He's Different)by Deb McEwanPublish: May 08, 2015Series: Jason the PenguinChildren's

Deb McEwan interview On 27, Mar 2018

"Born and raised in Pontypridd, South Wales, author Deb McEwan had two older brothers who joined the Army in their teens. Deb also enlisted in 1979, passed the tests and soon joined as a Clerk (now known as Combat HR Specialist). She started writing through farewell ditties/poems for Army friends and civilians, then dabbled with lyrics, and eventually published her first book “Reindeer Dreams”. To Deb, the best bit of writing a new book is the first draft. Over the years, her writing has improved with practice and experience and she’s in the process of re-editing the Aliens series to reflect where she is now."
Can you tell us a little bit about where you grew up and what your childhood was like?

I was born and raised in Pontypridd, South Wales during the 60s/70s. We didn’t have much money but had plenty of fun. My two older brothers joined the Army in their teens. We didn’t know any girls who had joined the Army so when I said I wanted to, my family tried to talk me out of it. I messed about in school and left with few qualifications. I didn’t want a dead end job and longed to travel, so went ahead with my application. Iwanted to be a Radar Operator but was told I’d spend the majority of my career in Scotland. Even as a teenager I hated the cold so didn’t fancy going to Scotland. I passed the tests and joined as a Clerk (now known as Combat HR Specialist). Following training my first posting was to the headquarters in Scotland!

When did you first join the army? What are some of your favourite memories from your 30 years there?

I was a naive seventeen year old when I enlisted in 1979. Women were trained separately from men and compulsory weapon training for women soldiers wasn’t introduced into the British Army until 1986. (That’s not to say that women didn’t use weapons, just that weapon training wasn’t part of the basic soldier training for females). By that time I was happily married and working as a sergeant at the joint headquarters near Monchengladbach in Germany. I made loads of good friends during my almost thirty-five years service. As well as seeing different parts of the UK, I was lucky enough to serve in Hong Kong, Cyprus and Germany where I spent the majority of my career.

What made you decide to become an author? What do you enjoy most about the job?

I started writing farewell ditties/poems for Army friends and civilians who were posted to new areas. I then dabbled with lyrics and have co-written a number of songs. My husband was very pleased when I presented him with a CD on our 25 th wedding anniversary. The song is called “We Belong Together” and is cheesier than a four-cheese pizza. He loved it though, so it did the trick.

I wanted to write a song for children but decided to write a rhyming book instead. I made most of my mistakes with my first book “Reindeer Dreams”, by publishing with a vanity publishing company. It was a steep learning curve. Saying that, it’s a lovely book with gorgeous illustrations so it wasn’t all bad. I have taken it off sale on Amazon as the company charged too much and I always want readers to get value for money.

Did you start with adult books first or children's? How do your adult-range books and children's books differ in terms of your goals when writing or publishing them?

The Aliens series followed “Reindeer Dreams” then the afterlife books, the penguins and soldiers.

I’ve always wanted to write books that readers enjoy, whether they’re young or old so I love it when readers tell me they enjoy a particular story. Saying that, children are more honest than adults so it’s extra special when a child tells me they love Jason the penguin or one of the reindeers.

Of all your books and story ideas, which are you most pleased with how it turned out?

Although there are many instances where people have had near death experiences, less research was required for my Afterlife Series compared to the Aliens and Soldier books. It’s more my imagination than anything else and for that reason it’s my favourite series.

In your series, "Unlikely Soldiers", do either Michelle Warbutton or Guy Halfpenny share characteristics and experiences similar to you when you were in the Army?

Some of the scenes within “Unlikely Soldiers” are based on my real-life Army experiences. We didn’t have equality and the same complaints procedure almost forty years ago, so bullies could sometimes get away with more than they do these days. There is a sergeant in my book who made life very difficult for my character Mouse, and that character is loosely based on a very nasty person I served under. I didn’t want the book to be exclusively about me and my husband, so ensured the male character was from a different location and chose a different trade to my husband. A friend in the Royal Military Police shared some traumatic stories so a number of scenes are based on his experiences.

What started The Afterlife Series? Have you incorporated any famous myths or lore in these stories?

I was sitting in the garden, chilling after a long walk and wondering what to write next. I probably should have started book three in my “Aliens” series. Ideas were swirling around in my head but nothing tangible. I saw movement on the ground and looked down. An army of ants were going about their business and some headed in my direction. As one neared my leg I lifted my foot to squish it, then hesitated as I had a fleeting thought. Looking up to the sky I wondered if anyone up there was poised to ruin the day or life of an innocent human who had taken a wrong turn, or perhaps found themself caught up in one drama or another.

This got me thinking about death, religion, the afterlife and the eternal battle of good versus evil. I left the garden and started writing straight away. The ant lived to fight another day.

As for myth or lore, there’s nothing intentional incorporated into the series, but I hope I’ve shown that people are very vulnerable when they’re grieving and can easily be taken advantage of.

Which scene or chapter was the hardest to write in "Beyond Possession"? Which book was the most time consuming in The Afterlife Series

The son of a very good friend took his own life last September and I lost my writing mojo for a while. This made “Beyond Possession” the hardest in the series to write. I used NaNoWriMo to give me the impetus to get back into it, so outlined my scenes in October and wrote the first draft during November.

The scene where a character is reincarnated as a hedgehog was the easiest to write. We had a hedgehog turn up at our door when we lived in Germany. The poor thing had a cut in its back where flies had laid eggs and a swarm was tormenting it. We did what we could but it wasn’t a pleasant experience.

The hardest scenes are those where the evils either groom children, or try to take over their minds with devastating consequences. Cruelty to young and innocent people is always harder to bear.

Where did you get your idea for the Aliens Guide books? What sort of significance or symbolism do the spiders in this story hold?

The majority of the ideas for this series come from my over-active imagination. Saying that, we had pet tarantulas when we were younger (yes I know I’m weird) and I believe spiders have a bad press. Don’t get me wrong, I know there are some nasty arachnids out there but the majority seem to be no more than a nuisance, yet many people freak out when they see spiders - even the tiny ones.

I thought it would be fun to have hero spiders who are emotionally attached to humans and want to save the human race from nasty aliens. A number of my friends are so scared of spiders they refuse to read the aliens books. I think it’s safe to say this series is very niche.

Are you someone that likes to incorporate morals into your stories? What sort of moral or message does the story "Jason the Penguin" have?

I wrote this book at the request or my niece and her husband to celebrate the birth of their daughter. I don’t intentionally incorporate morals into my stories. Jason the Penguin just happens to be different and he should be loved for his differences, not criticised or bullied.

What is your favourite part of writing a new book? What's your least favourite part?

The best bit is the first draft. Even though I outline each book, the characters take on a life of their own. As strange as it may sound, they often surprise me and I find the story takes a different road to the one I intended to travel. Imagine your friends or acquaintances doing something out of character and there you have it. Although I have two editors, I edit my books before I send them to the professionals for editing. By the fourth edit I’m usually struggling to stay sane.

If you were to retire from writing and had the option to travel and settle anywhere, all expenses paid, where would you want to go?

That’s a difficult one because I can’t imagine ever retiring from writing. I struggle with the cold so have lived in Cyprus since leaving the Army, and am pretty much where I want to be. I still have the wanderlust and wanted a little adventure after leaving the Army so we looked into travelling in the footsteps of Alexander the Great. Some of the countries were unsafe so we reluctantly decided against it. Instead we took a freighter cruise from Solerno (Italy) to Limassol (Cyprus), which satisfied my inner traveller for a little while.

How do you think you have grown since the publication of your first book? What are some things you've learnt over the years?

When I compare my first Aliens book to the Afterlife and Soldiers’ series, it’s as if someone else wrote it. I guess my writing has improved with practice and experience so I’m in the process of re-editing my Aliens series to reflect where I am now.

I’ve also learnt that marketing is a crucial task for Indie Authors. You can’t put your book amongst the millions on Amazon and simply expect readers to buy it.

Ask Deb McEwan a question

    • AllAuthor AllAuthor 7 months ago
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    • Have you ever incorporated something that happened to you in real life into your novels?
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      • Deb McEwan Deb McEwan 7 months ago
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      • I served in the British Army for almost thirty-five years. Some of the scenes in my 'Unlikely Soldiers' series are based on real events during my service, the others are pure fiction. I let my readers guess which is which!
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      • Deb McEwan Deb McEwan 7 months ago
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      • Doing something that you love, such as writing, is the easy bit. Marketing and getting readers to discover your books is the hard part.
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      • Deb McEwan Deb McEwan 7 months ago
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      • I started working with a few local musicians, by writing lyrics to their music. We co-wrote a number of songs then I wrote my own. I have absolutely no musical talent so my song 'Fallen Heroes' sounds quite hymn-like. I then decided to write a rhyming children's story and the rest seemed to follow on naturally.
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