Avery, Fiona Kai
AVERY, Fiona Kai
Female. Education: Graduate of Indiana University.
Agent—c/o Author Mail, Top Cow Productions, Inc., 10390 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90025.
Writer, poet, archeologist, historian.
No Honor: Set 1, Volumes 1-4, Top Cow Productions (Los Angeles, CA), 2001.
(With Billy Tan and Steve Firchow) Witchblade: Obakemono (graphic novel), Top Cow Productions (Los Angeles, CA), 2002.
Also author of The Lucky Strike (movie screenplay), 2000. Author of comic book series No Honor; writer for television and comic book series, including Crusade, Babylon 5, Spiderman, Tomb Raider, Witchblade, and XMen; interviewer for periodicals, including Starlog; work represented in anthologies, including The Year's Best Science Fiction, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 2001.
A Showtime television pilot based on the No Honor series was filmed.
Fiona Kai Avery earned her break writing for the science fiction genre because of her background in archeology. Avery was writing for publications, and when she interviewed Babylon 5 creator J. Michael Straczynski for Starlog, she asked him how he was going to handle the archaeology aspects of Crusade. Straczynski said he planned to hire consultants, and Avery immediately mailed him her resume. She was hired as a reference editor, and from there, she became a screenwriter.
In an interview with Mark A. Rivera for Visi.com, Avery responded to his question of how she views science fiction, sci-fi, and fantasy, by saying, "I believe that science fiction explores the impact of technology on people.… I think it's rare to find science fiction on television or the big screen today." Avery said that as she sees it, "if you took all the techno-babble and the neat futuristic elements out of the story, and you set the same story in the Bronze Age, and instead you were showing the impact of the stirrup or iron, or agriculture … you've got the same heart of the story, and it will have the same impact on your readers/viewers. I guess because I am a historian and archaeologist, I use parallels when I write what will happen in a hypothetical future, and through those parallels I tend to tell stories that may have a universal appeal to an audience."
Avery told Rivera that she enjoys writing mystery, fantasy, and dark fantasy, and she said that has a number of completed, but as yet unpublished, stories and novels, as well as screenplays. Rivera asked for her point of view as a woman who writes science fiction. She replied, "I don't really think of myself as a 'woman' who writes science fiction. But I don't really think of myself as a 'woman' in life either. That would predispose me to think of others as 'men' or 'women' first, and I'm the type to look at someone as a person first, not their gender.… But I guess that some people feel this is a genre that's heavily male-oriented. If it's about space, or science, it must be for men. I don't really feel that way. But then, I grew up on this stuff too."
Avery's first graphic novel is Witchblade: Obakemono. While the comic and television series focused on police officer Sara Pezzini, the graphic novel is instead about the weaponry Sara uses and is set in feudal Japan. There is a woman, Shiori, who is given the opportunity to use an ancient sword to avenge the murder of her husband. In order to draw on its power, Shiori must go on a journey, and along the way, she is joined by other women, including a runaway, an archer, a priestess, and a chimneysweep. The women return to vanquish those who have taken over Shiori's homeland, justice is achieved, and the repentant are forgiven. Library Journal's Steve Raiteri called Witchblade an "enjoyable, above-average mainstream comic."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Library Journal, November 1, 2002, Steve Raiteri, review of Witchblade: Obakemono, p. 64.
Publishers Weekly, September 30, 2002, review of Witchblade, p. 52.
Fiona Kai Avery Home Page,http://www.fionaavery.com/ (May 28, 2003).
Visi.com,http://www.visi.com/~wildfoto/reviews/interview3.html (May 28, 2003), Mark A. Rivera, interview with Avery.*