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Episode 26: Writing True Crime Stories with C.J. Wynn

podcast Oct 15, 2020

On this episode of the Fast Lane with Sara Jayne podcast, Sara Jayne talks to C.J. Wynn, author of the true-crime Wilder Intentions: Love, Lies, and Murder in North Dakota, how C.J. Wynn got involved in writing true crime stories, what was involved in writing her first book, and the future books that she is working on. 

Episode Highlights: 

  • C.J. Wynn shares how she got interested in true crime stories. 
  • Wilder Intentions: Loves, Lies, and Murder in North Dakota is C.J. Wynn’s very first book.  
  • The forward in the book is written by C.J. Wynn’s mentor. 
  • You have to have empathy and understanding for the people you are writing about. 
  • C.J. Wynn discusses the forms of manipulation that took place in the story.  
  • Was there any psychological analysis of the criminal culprits in the book? 
  • C.J. Wynn is calm at home, spends quality time with her family, and doesn’t really like to talk a whole lot. 
  • How did C.J. Wynn build relationships with the people that she spoke with when writing the book? 
  • What was it about this crime story that made her write the book? 
  • Is C.J. Wynn planning to write another book?  
  • Wilder Intentions: Loves, Lies, and Murder in North Dakota still ranks high on
  • Is C.J. Wynn connected to other true crime authors? 
  • still ranks high on
  • Does she ever want to meet Christopher Jackson? 

3 Key Points:

  1. C.J. Wynn has a Master’s Degree in Psychology.
  2. The three elements that C.J. Wynn finds most important in writing books is writing short chapters, leaving a cliffhanger at the end of every chapter, and describing everything so that the reader feels like they are inside the story. 
  3. The real-life victim in the book, Angela Wilder, wanted to be a mother and wanted to be in the medical field.  

Resources Mentioned:



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