Blog Interview with author A.F. Henley, regarding the new novel Înflori, released October 17, 2012.
So Henley, tell me about Înflori?
AFH: Înflori is a M/M romance, single fiction novel approximately 48,000 words long. It follows two men – Dustin: a disenchanted, indulgent twenty-eight year old with a penance for self-destruction and, Nicolæ: an introverted, intuitive Roma gypsy.
Dustin gave up on being worthy of anyone’s affections a long time ago, drowning his problems in substance abuse and meaningless encounters. He has learned it’s better to avoid love altogether than risk the inevitable moment when it all comes crashing down.
Nicolæ has neither eyesight nor excess, but he does have a wealth of family and intuition. He is nothing that Dustin would have anticipated in a potential lover, yet the more Dustin discovers, the more he finds himself willing to accept the risk – even if his conscience and the people in his life keep warning him away.
So what would your characters think about us interviewing them? Think they’d be up for it?
AFH: I would have to assume that would depend on which of the two we asked. I’d have no doubts that Dustin would jump at the opportunity to talk about himself. Not that you’d get anything all that personal from him. He’s one of those guys that could talk for hours about pretty much anything, yet nothing at the same time.
Nicolæ, on the other hand, would merely smile, pat the back of your hand and offer to make you tea. He wouldn’t be interested in self-promotion in the least. Nor would he have much to say about the concept of blogging. To quote a line in the novel, Nicu doesn’t “… like technology. And it does not like me. So if you would like to speak to me then you must come find me.”
How about telling me what inspired Inflori? Perhaps what made you make the jump from short story to novel with them?
AFH: Dustin and Nicolæ’s adventures began as a short story that I posted on y!gallery back in 2011 called “Proteja.” The characters were well received so I ended up writing a follow-up story titled “Lega” that also seemed to go over fairly well. That was surprising to me as, on a site like this, if the story wasn’t fanfiction it didn’t tend to do well. But it was actually a friend of mine who queried how it was possible that these two men could have ever met one another, let alone fallen in love, that inspired the novel.
Is there any music that makes you think of the novel (or vice versa)?
AFH: I’m actually one of those odd authors that can’t write with any background noise. No music, no television, no squeaking of the chair, and gods forbid someone make an attempt to talk to me. *laughs*
As such, I don’t tend to associate music to writing, or writing with music. It probably doesn’t make any sense, I know. But that’s me.
Can you tell me a bit about the research you did for the novel?
AFH: I put quite a bit of research into the Roma culture although that was more for use with the antagonist of the story, Nicolæ’s uncle, Emil. In all honesty, the basics of the culture, as I understood it, wouldn’t have been beneficial to Nicolæ’s persona.
I understand you have a giveaway going on to celebrate your release. What’s the concept behind it and how can we win?
AFH: The prize of the contest is a staurolite crystal that’s been drilled and set with a necklace clasp. Staurolite crystal is something that Nicolæ presents as a gift to Dustin’s mother, Lillian. It exists naturally in Switzerland, Russia, Australia, Brazil and the USA but its unique in that it naturally forms a cross within its medium. They’ve been touted for their soothing, calming energy that helps with stress reduction, anxiety and fear displacement, and it’s been said they’re useful in helping to overcome addictions. They have excellent spiritual qualities, including being a good grounding stone, having a number of healing attributes, and rejuvenating elements. Let’s just say that Lillian was a very good candidate for its abilities. *grins*
As for winning, the contest is a tumblr promotion so entries are done through the reblog process. This link: http://freedom1001.tumblr.com/day/2012/10/17/ has the rules, a picture, and all the details.
Now for the most important question of all, where can we buy it?
AFH: Înflori was published by Less Than Three Press (LT3) and purchasing details can be found here: http://www.lessthanthreepress.com/books/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=90&products_id=390.
Anywhere else we can find you?
AFH: Absolutely. I have almost eighty short stories and two novels posted on y!gallery, a few on dA, and I also have my own website. I’ve provided the links below but, of course, many of the stories are erotic in nature so please be advised that in most cases, these links are NSFW and are +18:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AFHenley (under construction)
I’m also more than happy to hear from readers via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for your time…
It’s been a pleasure and an honour, Grace. Thanks for having me.