Monday, July 16, 2012

Author Interview: Aida Brassington

Please help me welcome author Aida Brassington to A Buckeye Girl Reads! She's here today to talk about her book, Chasing Fools.

Title: Chasing Fools
Author: Aida Brassington 
Genre: Contemporary Romantic Suspense/comedy
Publisher: Green Needle Press
Release Date: July 20th 2012

Relationships are complicated even under the best of circumstances. For Varda Dorfman and Tommy Campi, these are the worst of times. Varda, an illegal foods smuggler, has pissed off Anthony Carluccio, the kingpin of the local underground dinner club, and put her plans for the future in serious jeopardy. Her boyfriend Gino won't quit bugging her to get married, even though his mother hates her. Tommy, Gino's brother and the ladies man of the family, can't even introduce the love of his life to anyone: he's secretly gay and dating the son of Carluccio's biggest competition. And now Tommy's getting pressure to go public.

When Carluccio's hit man turns up dead in Varda's closet after snacking on poisonous mushrooms, all hell breaks loose. Varda's running for her life, and since his mother is dating Carluccio, Gino's convinced the only way to save her life is to finally drag her to the altar. And when people start discovering Tommy's hush-hush relationship, things really start to get interesting.

1. What was your inspiration for writing Chasing Fools?
Chasing Fools was borne of my love of cheese. I know that sounds kind of weird, but a really good artisan cheese is a (smelly) thing of beauty. And it's illegal to bring cheese into the U.S. that's younger than six months. So I did what any good food lover would do: I, uh, turned criminal in pursuit of the cheese I wanted. My experiences in airport customs is what inspired the plot and my main character, Varda the illegal foods smuggler. I also lived in South Philadelphia for a lot of years, so when I was looking for a setting it was a natural fit for the story.

2. Have you always wanted to write?
I've been writing for as long as I've known how. When other kids were out riding their bikes, I was holed up in my room research Greek mythology and making up stories about them--mythology about mythology, I guess.

3. Do you read in the genre that you write in?
I like to dabble in a little bit of everything. My first novel (Between Seasons) was a contemporary ghost story, and my latest (Chasing Fools) is a dark comedy coupled with suspense. Both novels revolve around strong romance elements, although Chasing Fools includes two love stories--one straight and one gay. I guess you could say there's always a bit of romance in what I write, but not in a bodice ripper/erotica kind of a way.

4. Which character was the most fun to write & who was the hardest?
None of the characters in Chasing Fools were hard to write, primarily because I had such a clear vision of who they were in my head. Mrs. Campi was probably the most fun to write because she's based on someone in my life, and so it was almost like therapy to parody her so much! Anthony Carluccio, my villain, was also wonderful to write--how often do you get to write a classically South Philly plumber who has a thing for really gross, exotic foods and thinks he's Tony Soprano?

5. Who are your top five favorite heroines/heroes in literature?
I love Shadow from American Gods/Neil Gaiman--incredible voice. My other favorites are Owen Meany from A Prayer For Owen Meany/John Irving (he is written so distinctly); Marcus from Little Brother/Cory Doctorow (I love everything about him--he reacts perfectly to everything); The Countess from Even Cowgirl Gets the Blues/Tom Robbins (Please! A sexual hygiene tycoons who's afraid of vaginas? That's brilliant!); and Scout from To Kill a Mockingbird (I love kick-ass little girls).

Where to find Aida: Blog | Twitter | Goodreads 

Aida Brassington is an award winning writer who lives in the suburbs of Pennsylvania with her husband of five years and a Great Dane named Patrick. 

She is a former political junkie with a deep interest in artisan food, reading, and scuba diving. She has never spent time in a mental institution but often questions her mental health.

Aida can be bribed with chocolate. Bribed into what? Well, that all depends.