I’ve seen other authors do this, so I thought I might try it myself. So I wangled this interview with Fnaa, a supporting actor in my Bell Mountain series. Fnaa is only ten years old when he first appears in The Fugitive Prince, so cut him some slack. (Note: I have never before interviewed a fictitious character, but I am told it’s a nice skill to have if you want to work for The New York Times.)
Q: Fnaa, mostly what you do is impersonate King Ryons. In fact, you’re a dead ringer for him–even I can hardly tell the two of you apart.
Fnaa: Well, you should learn how. We don’t want to get stuck because you forgot who’s who.
Q: What’s it like to have a whole city full of people thinking you’re the king–when you aren’t? [long pause] Do you want to stop fidgeting and answer my question?
Fnaa: The little girl who’s a prophet or something, she said I could do it. She said God wouldn’t mind.
Q: But all those people cheering you–isn’t it kind of overwhelming?
Fnaa: What’s ‘overwhelming’?
Q: It means ‘too much to take in all at once,’ overpowering, awesome–
Fnaa: [Rude noise] I know what it means! It’s fun to take the tax money and throw it back to the people on the street. They really go for that! And it’s fun to call those high-and-mighty big shots names like ‘Fatty’ and ‘Baldy.’ Yes, I love all that–but it’s not like I want to do it all the time. Let King Ryons be king for a while.
Q: Didn’t you feel a bit guilty, allowing that good man, Prester Jod, to go on thinking you were King Ryons?
Fnaa: I’ve got to go now.
Q: But we’ve only just started the interview–
[Fnaa ducks back into the book and disappears. He makes one last comment: “If people want to know about this stuff, they ought to read the books! Why don’t you sell them some of your books, dummy? And that was that for the interview. ]