Today I ask Pamela Hart five questions about her new book!
1. What’s the name of your latest book – and how hard was it to pick a title?
Digging Up Dirt. Originally this was known as Current Affairs, but after discussion with my publisher, who felt that it gave the wrong emphasis to the story, I came up with Digging Up Dirt, which I quite like.
Titles are hard. I often change them in the process of writing the book, and publishers also often change them. For example, the second book in the Castings trilogy was originally Still Water, but the publisher was bringing out another book by that title in the same month, and thought it would be confusing for booksellers, so we changed it to Deep Water (which I actually think is better!).
2. If you could choose anyone from any time period, who would you cast as the leads in your latest book?
This is tough! For Poppy, I’d love Claudette Colbert in It Happened One Night – she has so much humour and spunk! Oh, no, I know: Carrie Fisher! That would be so cool.
For Tol, her love interest…James Masters in his Buffy days but with his original dark hair. But my husband (who might bear a passing resemblance to Tol) wants Leonard Nimoy in his younger days. Tol can raise one eyebrow…
3. What five words best describe your story?
Whodunnit. Light-hearted. Intriguing. Romantic elements.
4. Who is your favourite fictional team/couple?
How could I go past Phryne Fisher and Jack Robinson?
5. What song reflects a theme, character, relationship or scene in your book?
There are two main houses in this book – Poppy’s family home, where she is staying while she renovates, and her little house, where the murder happens. So I’ve chosen Madness’ ‘Our House’ – the house in the video is the same size and type as Poppy’s little house, but the lyrics are much more like her family home!
About Digging up Dirt
When your builder finds bones under the floor of your heritage home, what do you do? For TV researcher Poppy McGowan, the first step is to find out if the bones are human (which means calling in the cops and delaying her renovations) or animal (which doesn’t).
Unfortunately, ‘help’ comes in the form of Dr Julieanne Weaver, archaeologist, political hopeful, and Poppy’s old enemy. She declares the bones evidence of a rare breed of fat-tailed sheep, and slaps a heritage order on the site. The resultant archaeological dig introduces Poppy to Tol Lang, the best-looking archaeologist she’s ever met – and also Julieanne’s boyfriend.
When Julieanne is found murdered in Poppy’s house, both she and the increasingly attractive Tol are considered suspects – and so Poppy uses her media contacts and news savvy to investigate other suspects. Did Julieanne have enemies in the right-wing Australian Family party, for which she was seeking preselection, or in the affiliated Radiant Joy Church? Or at the Museum of New South Wales, among her rivals and ex-boyfriends? And who was her secret lover?
Can Poppy save herself, and Tol … and finally get her house back?
Digging Up Dirt is the first in a new series: the Poppy McGowan Mysteries.
Buy Digging up Dirt
About Pamela Hart
Pamela Hart is a best-selling author of more than 40 books. Digging Up Dirt is her first full-length mystery, and is the first book in the Poppy McGowan Mysteries series. Her last book was The Charleston Scandal, set in London in 1923, where the world of theatre and aristocracy collide (featuring Fred Astaire and the Prince of Wales). Prior to that, her ANZAC novel series told the stories of women living through the changing times of WWI.
She is also well known as Pamela Freeman, an award-winning children’s and fantasy writer published worldwide. Her most recent children’s book was Dry to Dry: The season of Kakadu, which is a 2021 Book Week Book.
Pamela teaches at the Australian Writers’ Centre, where she is Director of Creative Writing. She was awarded a Doctor of Creative Arts degree in 2006, and says the most lasting benefit is that when people ask you, ‘Is it Ms or Mrs?’ you can say, ‘It’s Doctor, actually.’