Buffyfest Blog: How did you get involved with Joss Whedon and the Buffy Universe in general?
Kelley Armstrong: My only involvement with the Buffy universe has been as a fan, and that's what got me the job. Another writer knew I'd said this was one universe (other than my own) that I'd love to play in. This writer was then talking to the publisher of IDW and they were discussing the end of After the Fall. He suggested I might be interested in writing a story arc. Which I was!
BB: Who is your favorite Angel character? Why?
KA: Fred. She had a perfect balance of strength and vulnerability. She made mistakes, but always bounced back determined to do better. That's the kind of strength I really admire in a person...and a character.
BB: What is your favorite Angel episode? Why?
KA: Tough question! I'll give two. "Hero" from season 1 and "A Hole in the World" from season 5. Emotionally and dramatically powerful plus just damn good stories.
BB: What do you think makes Buffy and Angel such intriguing characters that they've lingered long after their shows went off the air?
KA: They're archetypal heroes with a twist. Buffy is the "commoner plucked from ignominy and given great power" making her a teenage girl in a modern society added the twist. Angel is the "tormented hero trying to overcome his past." And he happens to be a vampire. Whedon took classics we recognize and love, and made them real people. And it really is the characters that make a series endure. The plots are interesting, but we keep coming back because we're invested in the characters.
BB: On your message board, you were asked about the canonization of Angel: Aftermath. Could you elaborate on your feelings about canon vs. non-canon?
KA: I leave it up to the reader. Yes, Aftermath is intended to be canon in the sense that it "counts" - it continues the main storyline of the series. But if a reader feels that anything not written by Joss Whedon isn't canon, I can understand that. Or if they really didn't like my story and decide to wipe it from memory, I'd be okay with that, too (well, okay with the "it's not canon" part...not so much with the "it sucked" part!) With a universe that so many writers add to, I think it comes down to the fans to decide, for themselves, what they consider canon.
BB: In your Women of the Otherworld Series you change narrators throughout the story. Will you be using a similar style by changing from one character's point of view to the next in each issue or do you have another style in mind?
KA: I considered that, but I already had a story in mind, and it wouldn't work to do it that way. Aftermath really is Angel's story, though others will have a stint on center stage.
BB: Are there any hints you can reveal to us about Angel: Aftermath?
KA: That's really tough. Any useful hints I give could give spoilers for what's to come in After the Fall. I can say that I'm not taking things in a radically different direction. I'm returning to a previous exit on the roundabout rather than taking a sharp left into new territory. And there will be a new character...or two.
If you want to learn more about Kelley Armstrong, check out her site here: