ARM:Where do you get the inspiration for your stories or characters?
AF:Everyday life is fascinating enough. You twist it a bit and you have a character. For example, the biker witches in the Accidental Demon Slayer series are a loose take-off of my crazy aunts. There are five of them and whenever I see them, I literally have no idea what they’re going to do next. Like the last time we got together, they decided to strip down and play dress up (one of my aunts has an entire costume trunk). And this was even before they busted out the drinks.
The talking dog in the series is based on what I imagine my dog would actually sound like (okay, so maybe the crazy is inherited). And in the upcoming paranormal M*A*S*H series, almost everyone in camp is a take-off or a combination of people I’ve experienced in real life. It’s more real that way, more relate-able. And definitely more fun.
ARM:Do your characters talk to you?
AF:Unfortunately, yes. Although I’m learning to control them. If I don’t, they take over the story and we lose important things like, say, plot. But I write intensely character-driven stories, so I think it’s important to listen to the people (and creatures) I’ve created. Sometimes they have better ideas than I do.
ARM:What other authors would you suggest to fans of you work?
AF:I’ve been compared a lot to Charlaine Harris, Christopher Moore and Lynsay Sands. My books can go quite dark, and they are definitely sexy, but it is the relationships and the touch of humor that truly defines them. Nine times out of ten, when someone approaches me at a signing, they want to talk about the characters.
ARM:What are some things that you would like your fans to know about you?
AF:Hmm…well, I’m a sucker for Firefly, Battlestar Galactica (new – Helo rocks), The Walking Dead (TV series, I’m just starting to get into the comics). And I will debate you anytime, anywhere about the True Blood TV series vs the books.
ARM:Do you have a current work in progress?
AF:Yes. Right now I’m working on the third book in the Monster M*A*S*H series. It’s about a surgeon who has been drafted into a paranormal M*A*S*H unit in the middle of a huge, endless supernatural war. This series has taught me a lot about myself as a writer. I’ve pushed myself and my characters really hard and it feels really good. The series is with St. Martin’s press and the first book comes out in mass market paperback this August.
ARM:What are you excited about doing or seeing at Fandom Fest?
AF:You mean after I geek out in front of Norman Reedus and John Rhys Davies? I’m looking forward to the programming and the people. I’ve never been to Fandom Fest, but I love movie/gaming/comic book/fantasy cons. And this is one of the best!
ARM:Where can we find out more about you and your books?