Saturday, August 23, 2014

Undertaking Irene: Author Interview

Today we have an interview with Pamela Burford who has written fourteen books to date. Her latest is Undertaking Irene...

1) What was your favorite book growing up and why? 
I inhaled the Judy Bolton YA mystery series. It’s similar to Nancy Drew. The wonderful thing is that later, I actually met and became friends with the author, Margaret Sutton. Those books captured my imagination, inspiring my love of mystery and great storytelling.

2) Where did you get the idea for this book? How did you know that was the book you wanted to write?
Like many of my books, Undertaking Irene was inspired by a news story. I read an article in the New York Times about a woman who is paid to deliver flowers to graves and scatter ashes. I knew right away I’d found the perfect occupation for my sleuth. I went further with the concept, of course, in developing Jane Delaney’s Death Diva business. In the beginning of Undertaking Irene, Jane has been hired to liberate a brooch from a corpse during the wake! Jane’s sidekick Sexy Beast, the neurotic poodle, was inspired by my own dog, Murray. Sexy Beast has his own Twitter account! Check it out: @SexyBeastTheDog.

3) What is the best thing that has happened to you as a result of your novels? 
That has to be the wonderful friends I’ve made in my writing groups, particularly the organization I founded back in 1996: Long Island Romance Writers, a chapter of Romance Writers of America. The other writers in LIRW are my writing sisters, offering mutual support, training, and those all-important reassuring hugs.

4) What was the last mystery novel you read, other than your own, that you LOVED? Why did you love it?
Currently I’m reading Timothy Hallinan’s latest Junior Bender mystery, The Fame Thief, and loving it. The sleuth is a burglar who solves crimes for other crooks—how could you not love that? Two other authors I can never get enough of are Tana French and Dennis Lehane.

5) Have you written in another genre whether in mystery or non-fiction, etc.? Do you wish you could?
I’ve written fourteen other novels, in the romantic suspense and contemporary romance genres. At this point I’m concentrating on my Jane Delaney mystery series. I love the small-town world I created for Undertaking Irene and am happily writing book two, to be called Uprooting Ernie.


  1. What a great profession for your character. I can't wait to try the series. You had me at "liberate a brooch from a corpse."

  2. I am looking forward to reading this book! :-)

  3. Thanks Pamela for a great interview!

  4. Thanks for the comments, everyone! This book was a hoot to write and I can't wait to publish the second in the series.