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Biography: Blake Stillwater
 

B. StillwaterBlake Augustine Stillwater was born April 7, 1948 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, the eldest son in a family of two boys and one girl. His father Stephen, who passed away in 1992, was a successful lawyer in Baton Rouge. His mother, Patricia, spends her time as she has for many years - fund raising for various charities, either by planning charity events or attending them. Blake's younger brother James, who has never married, is an accountant with his own firm in Orlando, Florida. His sister, Simone, has two children by her ex-husband and is currently in a long-term relationship with the board chairman of a Baton Rouge hospital.

Young Blake did extremely well at school, excelling in debating and report writing, and went on to study law at Harvard. After graduating near the top of his class, he joined the Chicago law firm of Braxton & Hix. He specialized in criminal law, and made his mark early for both his brilliant casework analysis and his courtroom flair.

Blake is known as a spinner of words, both in conversation and in his writings. The amazing story of one of his courtroom battles, which he first recounted at a dinner party in Chicago, sparked his first novel, Courtroom Conspiracy. Published in 1983, the book was a #1 best seller in the US, Canada, UK, and other English-speaking countries. It was also highly successful when translated into French, German, Italian and Japanese. Already well-off financially, Blake was more than set up for life.

While on a weekend back home in Baton Rouge in 1974, he met Southern belle Eugenia "Weegie" Tate Courtney. They married on June 14, 1975 and had one son, Philip "Scooter" Stillwater on August 3, 1977. Tired of the icy Chicago winters, Blake and Eugenia decided to relocate to the South in 1984 and moved to Oxford, Mississippi, which Blake saw as the Southern renaissance center of writing. Blake decided to work part-time as an attorney in Oxford and concentrate on his novels. He went on to write two more best sellers, Dark Plaza and Silencer. Several years ago, Blake worked on a screenplay for Silencer but was disappointed by changes demanded by Hollywood producers. The movie was a blockbuster, but Blake decided to concentrate on writing novels.

Since giving up his law practice in 1996, Blake has traveled frequently on promotion tours in the US and overseas, but retains a deep love for the South. His travel has left his wife somewhat dissatisfied, especially when couple with the talk of Blake's involvements with other women. The Stillwaters' friends are aware of a blazing argument around the time of their 25th wedding anniversary, which did seem serious.

Secretly, Blake had been seeing Wendy Holloway whenever they could both get together. He's the reason she came to Oxford, to help him with the plot of his next novel and further their romance. They met in December 1999 at the Four Seasons resort at Jimbaran Bay on the island of Bali, after he'd visited Australia on a promotional tour. He noticed Wendy had a laptop with her and told her he was starting to research a new project involving the Internet. She offered to share some of her computer and Internet skills over cocktails. Real sparks flew and they ended up lovers. When they got together again in Los Angeles in January, Blake convinced Wendy to move to Oxford.

While Blake has had many casual affairs in recent years, this relationship seemed to be serious and his increasing absences from home, and lack of interest in Eugenia, seemed to indicate that he was looking at the possibilities of divorce and a major life change.

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