Thursday, 3 July 2014

Interview with Writer Tamy Burns

Today on Bookaholic I am delighted to welcome Author Tamy Burns who talks about the collaborative books written by herself and author Kim Hughes. Tamy joins us all the way from Las Vegas which is a long way from bookaholics homeland of Scotland. Welcome Tamy it is really lovely to have you join us.

Firstly a little about yourself ie your education Family life etc. I am sure bookaholic readers would like to know a little more about you both. 

Kim has an English degree with a minor in Journalism. She co-authors with me and we are on book three of the What She Knew Trilogy. She has two historical romances out entitled, Treasured Love and Lord Tristan's True Love by Kymber Lee.

I taught at a private school and enjoy mentoring and teaching. I am married and have two grown children.

Tell us your latest news?

The first two books, Fateful Night and Darkest Day, of the What She Knew Trilogy are out and available on Amazon. Kim and I are working on the third and final book. We hope it will be out the Fall of this year.

When and why did you begin writing?

Kim has always loved writing and journalism, I’ve written five historical novels set in the Regency Era of 1811. One has been published and is currently available on Amazon. Its title is Treasured Love by Kymber Lee. I was drug into the business after I had taken a class with a well-known published author. That is where we came up with the idea for What She Knew and we wrote the first chapter. The teacher loved it and persuaded us to write the full novel.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

Kim considered herself a writer long before I did. She is an English major after all. For me, it was after our first book signing. LOL – but it’s true.

What inspired you to write your first book?

Kim's grandmother has always been her biggest fan and she’s the one who thought she could write the Regency Romances as well as some of the other published authors. As for me, I was brought in as chief researcher and I've loved it!! I also do most of the writing for the scripts that we have done from the novel version.

Do you have a specific writing style?

Our novels are sparse in detail and rich in action and speech. We believe everyone knows what an Italian restaurant looks like or the White House lawn. People don’t always need a lot of flowery details to get the image in their heads.

How did you come up with the title?

We struggled with it for a long time and then one day it just popped. Marilyn Monroe was in the forefront of every known circle; political, Hollywood and even the mob. She knew all kinds of secrets. Perhaps it was What She Knew which caused her death. Then, we had to come up with the titles for each book. They seem to come during the writing of each. Fateful Night, because it was at night that she 'died.' And, Darkest Day, because the day John F Kennedy was assassinated was a very dark day for America.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Not really but if they do happen to wonder if Marilyn Monroe and John F Kennedy survived. we've done our job.

How much of the book is realistic?

It is historically accurate. I took great pains to make sure that the dates and places were correct in every sequence. We love that it feels so real for a fictional novel.

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Our pat answer here is that everyone either wanted to be Marilyn Monroe or be with her. She is a beloved Hollywood star that was unfortunately treated like she was a dumb blonde. In reality she was extremely intelligent and kept a close eye on what was going on around her.

What books have most influenced your life most?

We both love mystery/suspense/intrigue kind of books.

If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor? 

 Agatha Christie has influenced us both.

What are your current projects?

We are working on book three. That's keeping us very busy.

Name one person you feel supported you outside of family members.

Our publisher, Kim Emerson, has been one of our biggest supporters! She is amazing.

Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

For Kim, it has been a life long interest and gift. For me, it's been very recent. Still, the researching part is my thing more than the writing.

Can you share a little of your current work with us? 

This is from Brightest Dawn, book three of the trilogy:

Jackie blew a smoke ring at her sister. “Really Lee, why do you always think I’ve done something?”

“Usually because you have,” Lee watched for a moment before her attention was drawn to the children laughing on the lawn.

“You wouldn’t understand if I told you. Besides it isn’t my fault.”

“What ?” Lee smiled and waved at Caroline as she chased the ball John-John had kicked.

“It wasn’t my fault and I’m not taking the blame.” Jackie remained oddly defiant.

“Fine. No blame. What happened?” Lee stubbed out the cigarette in the ashtray. She picked up her iced tea from the table between their chairs.

“I think Papa Doc drugged me with some type of truth serum.”

Lee spewed the sip of tea into the air. “Oh dear, you’ve been reading too many spy novels. Or have you been seeing a secret agent?” Lee laughed for a moment but caught the frown on her sister’s face. “Okay, I’m sorry. Tell me when this happened.”

“At the coffee shop a few days or maybe a week ago, I don’t really remember. I do recall thinking I had seen Jack. He was walking outside the coffee shop looking in and then he turned and walked away with his head hung.”

“Jackie, darling, you’re not making sense. Did you go see someone about your grief?”

“It really happened. I’ve told you he’s alive. Why won’t you believe me?” Jackie stood up and stormed into the house.

Wow, what a great extract. It really makes me want to read the next book. My next question follows on from this, Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

Not really, we work really well together. Kim has magic fingers and I love the research.

Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

I love all of the Agatha Christie books. We both do. Easy to read, not a lot of description, and great plot twists.

Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?

Not much right now. In the beginning, we did several book signing tours. Now, we are focused on online promotions and writing book three.

Who designed the covers? 

My son, Kenneth Burns did! We are so fortunate to have a graphic artist in the family.

What was the hardest part of writing your book?

For us right now it's location! Kim is moving to Vegas the later part of Aug, and until then, writing is nearly impossible for us. We need to be together, we just do.

Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?

We learned that not only are we best friends, but we are great writing partners. We are truly blessed!

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Just do it! Keep writing, keep perfecting your craft, network, promote, engage with your fans.

Do you remember the first book you read?

That's been too long ago. Books have always been a huge part of our lives. Kim's grandmother encouraged her to read and write and my mom always made sure I had books to read. We were both very voracious readers.

Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?

We both love people. Interacting with and reaching out help others is a passion of ours. We also really love making swag gifts for our fans.

What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

Bones, Castle, Mentalist, BBC's murder mystery shows, anything with a plot twist and mystery.

I love all of those as well so we obviously have similar tastes. If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?

Oh, well, I'd have to say work with youth and the needy.

Before we finish let's find out who we can see more about you and  your work. Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?


Are there any other links you would like to share?

Amazon UK: Fateful Night
Amazon US: Fateful Night



Thank you so much for joining us today on Bookaholic Tamy. It has been a real pleasure meeting you and getting to know more about you and your work. I am sure Bookholic readers will join me in wishing you all the best for your latest book and any future writing endeavours. 

That brings us to the end of another day in Bookaholic land. I look forward to seeing you all back here soon. Until then don't worry abut anything, just keep reading.


  1. Wendy, Thank You So Much!!!

    1. You are very welcome. It was lovely to have you on the blog