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Wendy Hoke

Wendy Hoke

San Diego, California

Wendy is an accomplished writer and blogger for clients across a diverse array of industries. Now, she has turned her attention to penning her own story.

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About the author

Wendy is an accomplished writer and blogger for enterprise-level organizations down to SMEs.

Wendy began her writing career while working at a top 10 Wall Street investment banking firm, where she researched and penned a weekly, compliance-approved newsletter detailing the events of the tax-exempt securities market. 

Subsequently, she moved from Wall Street to Main Street as a senior manager for a $2 billion retailer with operations across the globe including the U.S., Europe, Asia, and Iceland. In that position, she wrote numerous business plans, scope statements, RFPs and marketing materials. 

She is writing this book because it is her story. Her grandfather was a Bishop for a mainline protestant denomination, and he did commit incest within the family. While she has fictionalized some minor parts to make the story flow better, many of the scenes and conversations are verbatim. The family dysfunction is real. She has lived through the process of embracing the truth and committing to tell the truth if the subject arises.  

The incest disrupted familial relationships for decades. Now, 40 years later, truth has dramatically altered that disruption.

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If The Bishop's Cross hits 500 pre-orders by Thursday 11 April 2019 midnight UTC, then it will be pitched to 15 traditional publishers when the campaign ends. If The Bishop's Cross hits 250 pre-orders by Thursday 11 April 2019 midnight UTC, then it will be pitched to 47 independent publishers when the campaign ends. If The Bishop's Cross hits 100 pre-orders by Thursday 11 April 2019 midnight UTC, then it will be pitched to 55 hybrid publishers when the campaign ends. If The Bishop's Cross hits 50 pre-orders by Thursday 11 April 2019 midnight UTC, then it will be pitched to 36 service publishers when the campaign ends. If The Bishop's Cross hits 500 pre-orders by Thursday 11 April 2019 midnight UTC, then it will be pitched to 153 publishers when the campaign ends.
How it works ›

Publishizer is a crowdfunding literary agency. If 500 pre-orders is reached, then we pitch this proposal to traditional publishers. If not reached, then it gets pitched to non-traditional publishers.

The Bishop's Cross

Finding Strength and Peace in Truth

Despite trauma in childhood, a glam girl from Wall Street changes course and takes up mountain climbing and adventure. From climbing Snow Creek and camping in a desert oasis to trekking in Nepal, she finds her voice and strength to speak truth even when someone close fights to keep secrets.

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50,000 words
75% complete
2 publishers interested


Trekking in Nepal. Climbing Snow Creek. Camping in Anza Borrego. Mountain climbing and hiking in the High Sierras. Stunning mountain top vistas, unexpected storms, gold mines, and icy alpine lakes are the backdrop.

This is an adventure story with deep human insights. After a stint on Wall Street, Wendy makes a change in life, joins Main Street, and takes up mountain climbing. Along the way she encounters rhinos, crocodiles, monkeys, elephants, tigers, and bears, as well as a pack of Wild Englishmen.

What lessons does she learn in her real life adventures? Speaking truth leads to a clear pathway that truth wins. Truth brings peace. Truth brings power. Truth brings light.

The commitment to truth, even when someone else works unendingly to keep secrets, is worth every struggle on that pathway.The book is about love over hate, truth over lies, compassion over indifference, light over darkness.

The early trauma was childhood sexual abuse. My grandfather was a bishop in the American Lutheran Church, and he was a pedophile who preyed on little girls in his own family.

This book looks at the secrecy that surrounds this timely issue. It is set decades later, long after the abuser has died, and enlightens the reader about why anyone would keep these secrets. 

The #metoo movement focuses on holding men accountable for their sexual misbehaviors. However, the movement remains silent on the problems within a group (family, church, school, etc.) that allow a sexual predator to flourish. The book seeks to explain the potent shame and guilt that silences mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, sisters, brothers, aunts, uncles, and cousins while empowering them to embrace reality.

Many self-help books focus on courage: the courage to remember; the courage to heal; the courage to move on. My message is to find inner strength by speaking truth.

The message is one of compassion and love. The story focuses on the aftermath of sexual abuse rather than the actual abuse. 

My story speaks to the destructive cycle of anger, bitterness, and hate and how truth, compassion, mercy, and grace bring about peace of mind.

My objective is to reach people who have been sexually abused and reassure them that a life of love, compassion, grace, and truth will lead to greater inner strength and tranquility.


1. My Coyote Keeps Me Safe. The book opens in
Oriflamme Canyon in Anza Borrego Desert State Park in California. 

2. Trip to Nepal. Chapter 2 is set in Nepal as my mother takes my sister-in-law and me on a trek in Nepal. 

3. At Diane’s House. I have left a difficult
job where I experienced years of sexual harassment. 

4. Mammoth Men I Have Known. I accept an invitation to go skiing with 3 WWII veterans. 

5. Back at Diane’s House. The conflict with my mother begins to escalate. 

6. Villager Peak. My boyfriend and I decide
to climb Villager Peak for Valentine’s Day. But, we get caught in a sudden
rain storm.

7. Preparing for Easter. Back at Diane’s house, we begin preparing the meal for Easter. The conflict between the women again escalates subtly.

8. Climbing Snow Creek. I join my boyfriend
and his mountaineering friends on a climb of Snow Creek.

9. Mother’s Day Brunch. I take my mother to
brunch for Mother’s Day. 

10. “The Wedding.” I accompany my friend and her companion to Mammoth Mountain for a “mock” wedding. 

11. Indian Head Peak. After joining a canned pheasant hunt in Anza Borrego Desert, my boyfriend and I decide to climb
Indian Head Peak off trail.

12.  A Dream
Mountain to Climb. I find my dream mountain to climb in the Sierras. 

13. The Gay Priest. My mother and I are having coffee and reading the paper. The abuse scandals from the Roman
Catholic Church are in the headlines. 

14. Epilogue. This chapter is set many years later. My mother no longer speaks with me, and I have a son, and I am determined to speak the truth.


The target audience is those who have experienced CSA and wish to understand the family dynamics that enable a pedophile to continue to commit such acts. The audience is also family members who want to understand the power silence and shame can have over victims.

In addition, the Catholic Church continues to be rocked by continuing news of pedophile priests.

The numbers are staggering. Let's take a look at some statistics:

  • One in four
    girls and one in six boys will be sexually abused before they turn 18
    years old 

  • 30% of women
    were between the ages of 11 and 17 at the time of their first completed
  • 12.3% of women
    were age 10 or younger at the time of their first completed rape
  • 27.8% of men
    were age 10 or younger at the time of their first completed rape*

The effects of child sexual abuse can be long-lasting and
affect the victim's mental health. Victims are more likely than non-victims to
experience the following mental health challenges:5

  • About 4 times more likely to develop symptoms of drug abuse
  • About 4 times more likely to experience PTSD as adults
  • About 3 times more likely to experience a major depressive episode as adults

Out of the yearly 63,000 sexual abuse cases
substantiated, or found strong evidence, by Child Protective Services
(CPS), the perpetrator was most often the parent:

  • 80% of perpetrators were a parent
  • 6% were other relatives
  • 5% were "other" (from siblings to strangers)
  • 4% were unmarried partners of a parent**

Out of the sexual abuse cases reported to CPS in 2013,
47,000 men and 5,000 women were the alleged perpetrators.

In 88% of the sexual abuse claims that CPS
substantiates or finds supporting evidence of, the perpetrator is male.

In addition, Christians and members of other religions will want  to understand how a pedophile uses a position within a church to shield himself.

Christianity is the largest religion in the United States. In 2016, Christians represent 73.7% of the total population,
48.9% identifying as Protestants, 23.0% as Catholics.

*National Sexual Violence Resource Center



Pre-launch Marketing

I am sending an email to all personal email contacts (3,500+) to announce the launch date and ask for support by joining my launch team. Those who join my launch team will receive special recognition on the acknowledgements page.

I currently have a launch team with Facebook contacts in excess of 9,000 contacts. This is across the U.S. and Britain.

One member of my launch team is an accomplished, published author and poet. Another is a prize winning blogger.

I am posting on Facebook and Twitter daily with a CTA. In addition, I am posting information about The Bishop’s Cross in Facebook groups. One group has 14,000+ members, another has 40,000+ members, and a third group has over 7,700 members.

Post Launch Marketing

I will send weekly emails with updates on the campaign, CTAs, and asking for support by forwarding/posting the link to the Publishizer page.

Personal messages to all who preorder the book with requests for support in spreading the link.

Personally emailing organizations such as SNAP (Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests), Childhelp, Justice for Children, and The International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect.

I will also personally contact advocacy groups through state bar associations and associations for psychologists and psychiatrists.

I will send press releases detailing the publication of The Bishop’s Cross.

Overall Marketing

The launch of The Bishop’s Cross is in conjunction with my blog. I will be posting daily to it regarding the book.

I will include a page on my website, Hoke Consulting Group, dedicated to the book with links to the preorder page.

I will be posting videos on YouTube as well.


The Bishop's Cross faces competition from two main categories dealing with sexual abuse: books by victims and how they recovered; books by doctors and psychologists who treat survivors.

My book differentiates itself in a critical way. This story focuses on relationships (in my case, mother/daughter) that allow childhood sexual abuse to go unchecked. The story examines the power struggles between those who want the abuse to remain secret and those who want it to stop or to report it.

"Miss America by Day" by Marilyn Van Derbur comes closest to paralleling my particular perspective. Even so, there are crucial differences between the books. Mrs. Van Derbur touches only briefly on her relationship with her mother, who clearly knew that her husband was molesting their daughter.

My book goes into the power relationship in much more depth. However, while it details some unpleasant truths about those power struggles, ultimately the message is to view others with compassion and mercy, even a mother who does not protect her daughter.

In short, my book is one of very few that attempts to answer in a very personal way this question: why does anyone remain silent about childhood sexual abuse when they know it is happening?

Most other books available in the marketplace focus on the abuse itself, the abuser, and/or the struggle to emotionally heal from the abuse.

Books by survivors include:

"Miss America by Day" by Marilyn Van Derbur

Mrs. Van Derbur wrote an exceptional story of recovery from PTSD due to CSA. However, she touches very lightly on the subject of her mother.

"Silent No More - Victim #1's Fight for Justice Against Jerry Sandusky" by Aaron Fisher

A heart-wrenching story of Mr. Fisher's fight against Jerry Sandusky and the battles he fought to bring Mr. Sandusky to justice. His story also includes how his mother fought to protect her son, which is a very different message from The Bishop's Cross.

The following books are by professionals who treat victims. Their messages are relevant; however, they are not from personal experience, and they focus on the psychological healing necessary to recover from CSA.

"The Wounded Heart: Hope for Adult Victims of Childhood
Sexual Abuse" by Dan Allendar, Karen Lee Thorpe

"REPAIR Your Life: A Program for Recovery from Incest &
Childhood Sexual Abuse" by Marjorie McKinnon

 "The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the
Healing of Trauma" by Bessel van der Kolk, MD

 "The Courage to Heal: A Guide for Women Survivors of Child
Sexual Abuse" by Ellen Bass, Laura Davis

2 publishers interested Express interest

The publishers will be visible after the campaign has ended.

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In September 1997, my mother Gretchen, my ex-sister-in-law Lynn, and I went trekking in Nepal. My mother, who has traveled
all over the world, gave this trip as a Christmas gift to both Lynn and me.
The trek was The Royal Trek, designed by the natives for a visit by Prince Charles.

We flew into Katmandu and headed west towards Pokhara. There we met up with the sherpas, guides, and cooks who would escort
us on our hike through the lower foothills of the Annapurna range of the
Himalayas. The highest altitude we reached was no more than 6,000’, but we could
see the big mountains from exquisite vantage points.

No written description or photographs
can substitute for seeing those mountains in person. In California, the cloud
cover obscures our picturesque Sierra mountain range with its many 14,000’
peaks. But the Himalayas rise above the cloud cover, and the alabaster peaks
float in the heavens.  When flying in Nepal, you look out the airplane
window and up at the peaks. No one looks down on the Himalayan ranges.

This particular story
begins when the three of us broke off from the main group. We took our own
jaunt to southwestern Nepal to visit two national parks that border India: Chitwan and Bardia. Our guide took us to the Katmandu airport, gave us box
lunches, and the following instructions: “when you arrive in Nepalgunj airport,
a porter from Chitwan will meet you and take your luggage, your tickets, and
passports for safekeeping. You will be fine.”

Upon arrival at Nepalgunj Airport, we disembarked from our 10-seat puddle
jumper onto a short tarmac. Hundreds of military soldiers carrying machine guns
surrounded the airport. The pilot directed us to the only building within
sight. Inside I saw essentially two main rooms, one of which appeared to
be a customs-type check, and the other for baggage claim.

I made my way to the baggage claim area to meet up with my mother and Lynn. It was a small room, dank, dirty, and with only one bare light bulb hanging
from the ceiling.

The baggage started to come through the chute. Before we could move towards our
luggage, a man darted through the crowd, grabbed all of it in his hands and ran
off. He disappeared completely. We were stunned.

“Well,” Lynn said, “maybe that’s the guy from Chitwan."

We stood in the small room for several hours. We were all alone, the only women
in sight, and had no way to communicate with those around us. The baggage claim
area began to empty except for the soldiers with their machine guns.

Suddenly, a Nepalese man came running up to us. He was totally toothless and
was waving his arms maniacally. He could not speak, but kept frantically
motioning, not pointing go here, go there. His arms were like windmills.
Lynn handed him our tickets and passports. Then he disappeared.

So there we were. We had no luggage, tickets, or passports. We were half way
around the world from home, surrounded by heavily armed military.

Dusk fell quickly, and we went outside to the curb. We sat down on a brick
wall, and halfheartedly picked at the food in our box lunches. Then we stood up
and meandered to the other side of the street.

None of us wanted to express the rising fear we felt. We remained quiet,
waiting for each other to speak. I was silently upset with Lynn for handing
our tickets and passports to a stranger.

“Are you going to Chitwan?” a male voice with an English accent asked us.

“I believe this is your truck. I’ll be riding with you part of the way. I am
going to Bardia, but my truck is behind schedule, so I will go with you until
they catch up."

We turned to see a man, quite handsome, in his early 40's dressed in trekking
gear. A jeep with an open truck bed was at the curb.

“You are the American ladies, are you not? Going to Chitwan? This is your

After some hesitation, we got into the jeep, as did the English gentleman, and
our jeep took off into the pitch dark night.

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