I’m pleased to bring you this interview today with DeWanye Landwehr, author of The Engineer Factory!
1) What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?
I use my given name: DeWayne Landwehr.
2) What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre?
The Engineer Factory – autobiography.
3) What is the book about?
A high school graduate from a small mid-western town is surprisingly accepted into one of the toughest engineering schools in the country: General Motors Institute (nicknamed The Engineer Factory by its students). He is surprised because he doesn’t have all the pre-requisites for entry, but luck is with him. He struggles with the curriculum because he has not had all the prerequisite courses for entry, so he is always playing catch-up. In addition, the course load is grueling, and there are no second chances.
During his college education, his attention is distracted by a lot of peripheral events: his grandfather dies, John Kennedy is shot, race riots reach the college town (Flint, Michigan), he gets married, experiences three major strikes within ten years, but somehow he perseveres and becomes a General Motors engineer. He works his way up to middle management within the Guide Lamp Division, then is transferred to the GM Technical Center, where he works with the automotive safety community and the GM board of directors’ safety committee, accompanying some of the executives to Washington for various meetings and hearings.
While at the Tech Center, he begins a Society of Automotive Engineers committee to write performance standards for mobility equipment made for handicapped drivers, and is nominated for a presidential award by the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association.
The story continues through the turbulent times that resulted in GM reorganizing several times, and eventually shedding its component divisions.
General Motors Institute education is a work-study program, so the book also includes a lot of personal anecdotes about his work experiences at the Guide Lamp Division of General Motors as well as some history of General Motors, Guide Lamp Division, and Anderson, Indiana, where the division is located.
4) Where did you come up with the idea?
The book was a natural progression from my first autobiography that dealt with my life through high school, which is called “Will That be Regular or Ethyl?”
5) How long did it take you to write it?
6) Did you learn anything from the project?
I learned that my memories did not always match with the memories of others who went through the same experiences.
7) Do you have an author website and/or blog? How about a book video?
I had opened a FB page for the first book, but I didn’t think it was very helpful. Still have it, but it is not very active.
8) Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists?
Find a place to write that works for you. Write when the inspiration strikes you.
9) What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?
I like historical fiction and genealogical sagas. I am open to reading and reviewing new authors. I have reviewed over 100 books on Goodreads.
10) What is your favorite book of all time and why?
Pillars of the Earth, by Follett. It’s in my wheelhouse of historical fiction, is very well written, and takes place in one of my favorite timeframes: the middle ages.
11) Fun Question: Do you have any pets? If so, what kind?
Not at this time. Have had dogs in the past.
12) Fun Question 2: Do you own an electronic reading device? If so, what kind and how do you like it?
Kindle. I love it – carry it wherever I go, and open it to read whenever I have a minute or two.
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