Dana Fredsti is an actress with a background in theatrical sword-fighting, whose credits include the cult classic Army of Darkness. Her favorite projects, however, included acting alongside Ken Foree (Dawn of the Dead) and Josef Pilato (Day of the Dead). She has been a producer, director, and screenplay writer for stage and film, and was the co-writer/associate producer on Urban Rescuers, a documentary on feral cats which won Best Documentary at the 2003 Valley Film Festival in Los Angeles.
Along with her best friend Maureen, Dana was co-producer/writer/director for a mystery-oriented theatrical troupe based in San Diego. While no actual murders occurred during their performances, there were times when the actors and clients made the idea very tempting. These experiences were the basis for her mystery novel Murder for Hire: The Peruvian Pigeon (Rock Publications, 2007). Dana also co-wrote What Women Really Want in Bed (Quiver Press) with Cynthia Gentry, their second writing partnership after Secret Seductions, for which Dana used the pseudonym Roxanne Colville.
She has written numerous published articles, essays, and shorts, including stories in Cat Fantastic IV, an anthology edited by Andre Norton (Daw, 1997), Danger City (Contemporary Press, 2005), Mondo Zombie (Cemetery Dance, 2006), and Hungry for Your Love (St. Martin’s Press, 2010). Her essays can be seen in Morbid Curiosity, Issues 2-7, as well as the anthology Morbid Curiosity Cures the Blues Scribner, 2009). Dana just finished Plague Town (Titan Books, April 2012), the first in her new Ashley Parker paranormal/zombie series and is hard at work on book two. She also writes spicy genre romance under her nom de plume Inara LaVey.
Tell us a little about the kinds of things you write.
Mysteries, horror (zombies, please!), spicy genre romance (and I try to sneak a bit of horror in when I can), non-fiction, screenplays… you name it, I’ll write it! I love reading different genres and that pleasure in switching out extends to my writing.
What was your most recent publication?
Fixation (paranormal for Ravenous Romance, February 2012)
Which grammatical error do you make most often that you wish you didn’t?
My mother is a close cousin to Henry Higgins and I am not allowed to make errors. I’ve had the difference between “lay” and “lie” beaten into me. “No, Mommy! No more wire hangers!!!”
What #1 piece of advice would you give to a new writer?
Learn the difference between constructive criticism and toxic bullshit. Listen to the former and hone your skills.
What is it about horror that draws you to the genre?
I love being scared. It may have to do with an acceptance of my own mortality or just the fact I’m a very morbid person…but I’ve always loved it and always will.
Find Dana here: