1. Which of your characters is your favorite?
2. Tell me about your travels.
3. Coffee, tea, or milk?
4. What else can you do besides write?
I’m quite good at riding horses. I started when I was five (I’m now 31) and managed to talk my way into a job leading horseback tours to Machu Picchu while I lived in Peru. I hadn’t ridden in about ten years at that point, but after riding for 11 years solid you don’t forget. It was the best job of my life. 5. Who are you reading right now? I’m just heading into the major climax of my third Jim Butcher book in four days. I love the Dresden Files but most of my copies are boxed up in my mother’s attic, so I’m gradually buying them all again.
5. Who are you reading right now?
6. Pop culture or academia?
7. What is the toughest scene you ever wrote?
8. Where do you find your inspirations to write?
9. Food you could eat everyday.
10. Are you into sports or other physical activities?
I love to run, swim and DANCE. I miss all of it desperately. I slipped a disk at the end of last year and only now getting to the point where I can take long walks again. I fully intend to work my way back up to being a gym bunny and dance fanatic. Before I left Peru last year I was dancing several hours of salsa and general disco every night of the week and going to the gym every weekday morning. I sleep so much better when I’m getting plenty of exercise.
11. What kind of music speaks to you?
Anything with minor chords and/or a solid bass beat. I also love strings.
12. Do you outline your stories or do they just take you along for the ride?
Both, in a way. I make copious notes before I even start and then just set out on the journey. I have all my main characters before I start but any number of extras can pop up once proceedings are underway. I also make a lot of notes on the mythology and politics of the worlds I’m writing in and the species populating them.
13. Celebrity crush.
14. Who are the biggest influences on your work?
Terry Pratchett and Anne McCaffrey. I love that Terry’s work always makes me laugh, and yet there’s always a deeper message there, to do with human nature and how we should treat each other. I don’t aim to include messages in my books. I’m not that good. Anne McCaffrey introduced me to the idea of sentient, communicating dragons with her Pern series and I simply love that. I can’t get enough of the dragons!
15. Do you still watch cartoons?
Anne-Mhairi Simpson writes fantasy, preferably for teenagers because they’re closer to her mental age. This can, and often does, involve griffins, unicorns, werewolves and/or vampires. And because she likes a laugh, there are also pink mice and gods with faulty moral compasses. But whatever she’s writing, there’ll be a lot of blood and a LOT of magic, because that’s what makes her worlds go round. She’s been to six schools (seven if you include university) and lived in four countries on two continents. She speaks three languages and bits and pieces of three more. She once galloped a horse into a cow (by accident) and she’s been to Machu Picchu three times. Apart from writing, she likes pretty shoes, making jewellery, films, dancing, reading and chocolate. Don’t forget the chocolate.
Anne-Mhairi's novel For the Love of Gods will launch on October 27, 2011. It is the first in The Nexus Chronicles series.