Archer Mayor is the author of the Vermont-based crime fiction series featuring Detective Joe Gunther. He is the 2004 winner of the New England Independent Booksellers Association Award for Best Fictionthe first time a writer of crime literature has been so honored. Before turning his hand to fiction, Mayor wrote history books, the most notable of which was Southern Timberman: The Legacy of William Buchanan.
Mayor continues to work as a death investigator for Vermont's Chief Medical Examiner, a Deputy Sheriff for Windham County, VT, an investigator for the Windham County States Attorneys office, the publisher of his own backlist, a travel writer for AAA, and he travels the Northeast giving speeches and conducting workshops. He also has 25 years experience as a volunteer firefighter/EMT.
From the author's website
This biography was last updated on 12/11/2010.
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PW Talks with Archer Mayor by Louise Jones
PW: What's your background?
AM: I'm a global bum. I've lived all over the world, in 30 to 40 places. My mother is Argentine, my father was born outside Gloucester, Mass. My work background is nothing if not chaotically peripateticjournalism, editing, historical writing. What sew it all together are the twin engines that fuel me as a writerignorance and curiosity. I never write about what I know, but what I want to find out about.
PW: Why do you write mysteries?
AM: I wanted to make a living as a writer and pragmatically if there was a chance to do soand statistically there isn'tmysteries were a viable market then [the 1980s]. Mysteries were no longer about good or bad guys and car chases, they were about human beings who happen to be good or bad guys, and what they do. I don't like pure puzzle mysteries. I like mysteries about three-dimensional human beings who interact. When we can't make sense of the real world, we read a form of literature that's the same thing, but with a beginning, middle and end where the good guys win. It helps make reality more understandable.
PW: How much research do you do?
AM: A lot. I...
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