Assaph Mehr’s Felix the Fox Stops By To Visit The Pukah

Assaph Mehr’s Felix the Fox Stops By To Visit The Pukah

Murder In Absentia: Togas, Daggers, and Magic (Felix the Fox Book 1) by [Mehr, Assaph]
A young man is found dead in his bed, with a look of extreme agony on his face and strange tattoos all over his body. His distraught senator father suspects foul play, and knows who to call on.
Enter Felix the Fox, a professional investigator. In the business of ferreting out dark information for his clients, Felix is neither a traditional detective nor a traditional magician, but something in between. Drawing on his experience of dealing with the shady elements of society and on his aborted education in the magical arts, Felix dons his toga and sets out to discover the young man’s killers.
Murder In Absentia is set in a fantasy world. The city of Egretia borrows elements from a thousand years of ancient Roman culture, from the founding of Rome to the late empire, mixed with a judicious amount of magic. This is a story of a cynical, hardboiled detective dealing with anything from daily life to the old forces roaming the world.

Welcome back everyone.  Assaph, welcome back as well.   Who’s this gentleman you’ve got with you this evening?

  • Allow me to introduce you to Felix, the protagonist of Murder In Absentia.
  • Felix: Ave

Welcome Felix. Will you start us out by telling us a little about yourself?

  • I am what you call in your world a private detective. People hire me to resolve their problems – problem that usually have an occult nature.

That sounds ominous. Do you have any cases you can talk about, or is everything hush-hush?

  • Oh, plenty of cases I can talk about. In a way, Assaph is just the scribe for my memoirs.I started to study at the Collegium Incantatorum, but was booted out. In a bizarre twist of fate, I worked for a couple of other detectives. I then took out to work on my own.
    Initially most of my cases were small game. Purloined jewellery, missing persons, cheating spouses were what paid for my bread and fish sauce. I was lucky with the occasional debunking of charlatans, confirmation of ancient scrolls, and even, rarely, a real magical ring. I thought those would be the highlight of my career, until that time I was called upon to help a senator. His son died in what looked like a cult’s dark rite, you see.
    He needed someone who knows what’s what, but that could keep things under wraps and away from the authorities.My career seem to have taken off after that, with word of mouth providing me with more and more high-profile cases.

Sounds like you discovered a way into the dangerous cases. Ever wish you were still working the small change cases still?

  • No, not really. For one, I like not worrying about when and where the next meal is coming from. For another, there were also… personal development associated with the cases. People I’ve met, you see, whose company I very much enjoy.

I stand properly corrected. Yet, that leaves the question – how often do you have to watch over your shoulder in case someone doesn’t like you investigating your current case?

  • That happens. When the case is simple, there is usually not a lot to worry about. Small time crooks have a certain respect to one another.It’s the high profile cases, those with the purple-bordered toga-wearing customers, that cause the most grief. They can get vindictive, and have long memories. Social events – when I am invited to them – can become an interesting exercise in navigation.As for my current case, by which I mean the one Assaph is currently writing down, there were certainly some unseemly developments.

Dare I ask, or is that better left for the papers?

  • That is best left for the eventual publication of the scrolls.
    I’ll only say that I was a bit too cocky, but that I’ve learnt my lesson.

I think we all run into that from time to time – that over confidence.

Speaking of which… what’s the most common reason for a case cracking wide open for solution for you?

  • I wish it was something clever, but most often it is leg work. Miles and miles of my sandals beating the pavement, as I go around the city chasing leads and suspects.
    Then again, there is the occasional spark of inspiration.

Inspiration’s always good.
I know time is a precious commodity, so I won’t keep you much longer. Just a couple of questions.
What’s your favorite thing to do when you’re not working a case?

  • Spend the money I made in the last case.

Makes sense. And one for humor – if you could meet anyone in the world, who would you choose?

  • Probably Fortuna. I’d love to have a respectful chat with the goddess, and ask her to please chose someone else.

Oh, dear. Now I really DO need to go find your memoirs.
Felix, thank you for letting Assaph bring you over to visit. I have really enjoyed our chat. Assaph, thank you again for coming back for a return appearance.Any last words?

  • You can find some of my shorter (though not sweeter) cases on my website.
    My first big case you can find published in your world with the title Murder In Absentia.
  • A few short stories involving Felix, mostly from his past prior to Murder In Absentia. To receive notifications about new posts, short stories and news, please click the “Follow” button…
  • Thanks Kat for having us both. It was a pleasure talking with you again.

The pleasure’s been mutual Assaph.  Once again, thanks for making the long trip over to visit.

If you’ve enjoyed the meeting Assaph and getting to know his character Felix, you can find out more about the pair on  on Twitter, on Assaph’s website, and on Facebook.

Thank you everyone for stopping by today.  If you have any comments or questions, please leave them in the comments below. Discussions are always welcome. And, don’t forget to come back again to see who else has stopped by to Visit with the Pukah.

In the mean time….

Keep those pages turning!

Assaph Mehr Stops By To Visit With The Pukah


Welcome, welcome.  Tonight we’ve a traveler coming in from Australia to visit with us.  Please give a warm welcome to Assaph Mehr. Assaph, will you get us started with a little about yourself, and what started you on your writer’s journey?

  • Hiya!
    I’ve always liked to read, and grew up on classic sci-fi & fantasy as well as detectives and thrillers. I’ve also always liked history, so historical detectives has been a passion.
    I just never planned on writing anything before retirement.
    Then one night about 2 years ago, my wife complained that she had nothing left to read. So after everyone was in bed, I sat down and started to write that idea that has been kicking around in my head for a while…. and haven’t stopped till I finished the manuscript!

Sounds like you were a man on a mission.

While you were writing, did you run into many challenges you had to overcome?

  • With the first draft, not so much. With the current WIP I find I struggle to find the time… But I blame the baby that joined us in the intervening time for that
    I have the stories in my head. I enjoy exploring them as I put them down on paper (well, screen). I just wish more time to do it in.

Congratulations on the new addition. Any tips for making family life, work, and writing balance? Any one of those would be a full time (or more) job, it seems.

  • They are. When I find the leprechauns selling more hours in the day, I’ll let you know.
    Until then, it’s just a matter of finding the time – even the small windows – and plugging at it little by little.

Funny thing, that’s what I hear the most often.

Does that mean you try to write every day, or is it more like you block of parts of the weekend to write?

  • My current writing schedule is on the train ride to and from work. That’s about 45 mins uninterrupted twice a day, that I can devote to writing (unless I’m tired – in which case I read).

Well, it is bandied about that reading is the replenishment of writers. Any favorite authors you find inspirational?

  • I read whatever catches my fancy at the time. Pretty eclectic.

Then I’ll try to narrow it down some. Any indie authors who have caught your fancy?

  • Dan Buri has a great style, with gentle, soulful writing.
    Wendy Waters has a great talent at the depicting broken, slightly mad people.
    Jonathan Maas defies categorisation, with each of his books in a different genre and exploring different issues.

Oooh. A couple of new ones to look up.

A slight change in subject with a double question: Do you find the indie author world one that’s supportive? Do you have a personal set of folks who support you, beyond your family?

  • Yes! The indie community, by and large, is extremely supportive. I’ve made many new friends since publishing my book.

Friends are always good to have, and new friends even better.

Since I know you’re in Australia, I’m curious – what’s the hardest part about being an indie author for you?

  • Timezones are not too much of a problem. Most of publishing and marketing is online anyway.
    I sometimes wish I could attend conventions more often, but realistically there are a lot of geeky and bookish cons in Australia that I haven’t explored yet.
  • The “hardest part” would be very individual. Each author would have their strengths and weaknesses. Each one just need to learn to deal with them, in addition to the general learning curve of writing, publishing, marketing.
    For me this is a hobby. I write because I enjoy reading my stories. There is nothing there that’s harder than pursuing any other hobby.

Have you ever considered making it your full time career?

  • I have a 3-step plan for that:
    1) Write novel
    2) Get movie deal
    3) Buy small castle
  • I’m working on step 2 now

::Chuckles:: I like that plan.

Any snippets you can share to help bring step 2 a little closer to fruition?

  • Several.
    You can find the first few chapters of Murder In Absentia for free on Amazon and Goodreads.
    I also publish short stories with the same protagonist and world as my novels on my website:
    I love it when people read them (they’re short!) and let me know what they think!

     Short Stories

    A few short stories involving Felix, mostly from his past prior to Murder In Absentia. To receive notifications about new posts, short stories and news, please click the “Follow” button…

Hmmm… I seem to remember reading one a while back. Really fun short read. Will have to go see what else you have hiding over there.

Do you have many books planned for your world, or do you write as the muse strikes?

  • I have the plots for three more books (one is the WIP) plus several short stories all ready to go. I got most of them while I was still writing my first novel, so as I keep writing I don’t expect to run out of ideas any time soon.

Are they being polite and waiting their turn?

  • In a way. Sometimes a short story will interrupt everything I’m doing, and demand to be written right there (like Girl On Fire). The novels are mostly waiting their turn, as – even though they are independent – there is a certain sequence to them.

I’d like to say you’re lucky, but I know not everyone’s muse is maddeningly insistent on all the words being poured out at once.

Since I know time’s a valuable commodity, just a couple more questions for you.

If someone wanted to keep up with you, and your progress, where would they find you?

::Chuckles:: Seeing as “all over” covers quite a bit of territory, I’ll happily take the links.

And the last question: Any final words before we wrap up?

  • I expect a lot of your reader will have an interest in writing. There is only one secret to writing a book, a secret I’ve shared with my daughter.
    The secret to writing a novel is…. <drumroll>… to write!
    No, seriously, that all it takes. Just keep writing, until you finish the manuscript. Then write some more.

I’ll have to try and keep that in mind – there’s times I know it can get hard to go any further.
Assaph, thank you so much for coming across the pond from “Down Under”. It was great having you here to visit.

  • My pleasure! Thank you for having me.

If you enjoyed the visit with Assaph, and wish to connect, I promise he won’t bite.  Use the links above, and get ready to find out more about Felix and all the antics he gets up to.  (Along with some of the foods he enjoys.)

Don’t forget to check back soon.  Next time, I’ll be talking with The Fox himself.  Until then…

Keep those pages turning.