Today I am interviewing Ferrett Steinmetz, author of the new cyberpunk, romance novel, Automatic Reload.
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DJ: Hi Ferrett!! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!
For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Ferrett: The marketing department always refers to me as a “quirky” author, which means “I write books that don’t fit into easy categories.” My Flex series was about a magic caused by obsessions, where if you were truly devoted to your cats, you would become a magnificent felimancer – master of cat magic! Except you wouldn’t want to rule the world, you’d just want to take care of your ever-growing hoard of kittens.
Then I wrote The Sol Majestic, which is a space opera about a restaurant – there are no warships battling, just chefs trying to make soup for the most personal of reasons.
So my books are a little weird.
DJ: What is Automatic Reload about?
Ferrett: It is a cyberpunk romance. Think about Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie in Mr. and Mrs. Smith, except they’re both faster-than-human killing machines with PTSD and panic disorder, falling in love while they murder people.
DJ: What were some of your influences for Automatic Reload?
Ferrett: They say that all books are a conversation with each other. In this case, Automatic Reload is very specifically a word I’m having with K. C. Alexander.
Don’t worry, though. It’s a good word.
See, I read K. C. Alexander’s cyberpunk novel Necrotech, and in it they had a marvelously violent female cyborg who exuded a steady stream of don’t-give-a-fucks. And because K. C.’s prose is so sharp and evocative, I kept watching their heroine Riko and her artificial limb wake up in garbage-smeared alleyways and lice-filled jailbeds and all manner of disgusting places…
And while I loved following Riko around, I kept asking one question:
When does she field-strip and clean that damn thing?
I mean, Riko kept landing in slimy, gunky situations and her artificial limb never seized up. And while I was waiting for the scene where Riko had to spend the day oiling and tightening her neglected limb, I started imagining my own “maintenancepunk” novel where I had a guy who did some serious tuning.
So not only is Automatic Reload about cybernetic action, it’s about a realistic cybernetic firefight where you have to worry about degrading weapons loadouts and proper configuration files. Continue reading