Today I have the pleasure of speaking with author Imari Jade
. Thanks for taking time to talk with me today Imari
To start, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana. During the day I work as a full-time financial analyst. I'm the mother of three grown sons and the grandmother of six. I've been writing over twenty years, starting out by writing humorous articles on raising kids, and then in 1993 I sent a romantic short story to Midnight Showcase Fiction and got published in one of their anthologies. This was followed up by a full length novel entitled A Christmas to Remember published by Star Dust Press. Shortly after that I began writing erotica. Presently I write for eight different publishing companies. My hobbies are reading romance novels and watching Japanese anime and dramas. I have a degree in Business Administration and Office Information Systems (and can't figure out how my cell phone works). Lately I've been learning Korean and Japanese with hopes of visiting South Korea in the future (once I get over my fear of flying).
Could you tell readers a little bit about your newest release In Deep Kimchi
In Deep Kimchi is a little different than anything else I've written before. It's the tale of fifty year old Shaundra Morrison an erotic romance writer who has been asked to join her boss Harper Kehoe and three other authors on a trip to Tokyo, Japan to help promote the opening of Harper's new publishing company, a partnership with a Japanese entertainment promoter. Shaundra tells Harper that she doesn't want to go because she is afraid to fly. Harper tries teasing her into accepting by offering to make her a member of the Mile High Club. Shaundra is tempted since Harper is so cute, but turns him down. Harper offers to give her the name of a doctor who can prescribe an anti-anxiety medication to help with her fears, but Shaundra turns him down. Then Harper's secretary tells Shaundra about Harper's plan to couple the authors up with a Japanese pop group to promote the opening of the new business. Shaundra still isn't interested until she sees a picture of Aomori, four gorgeous and very sexy young men. The cougar in Shaundra wakes up and she agrees to be sedated and taken to Japan.
Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I think the challenging part is the actual editing. Its hard trying not to write the way I speak. Most of the time I'm grammatically correct but every now and then I might write that my character is "making groceries" (a term we use frequently in New Orleans), then I have to remember that people up north don't speak that way.
What is the most interesting thing you've done in the name of research?
I don't know about interesting but the funniest thing happened while doing research for A Christmas to Remember. It's a tale of a young socialite with a fetish for erotic toys. So I ordered some erotic toy catalogs, got the information I needed and threw them away. One of my grandchildren, who must have been about two at the time took one of the envelopes out of the trash and pulled out the inserts just as his mother came to look for him. Needless to say that was when my whole family found out that mother wasn't writing about kids anymore.
If you could meet one of your characters, who would it be?
It would have to be Al-Shar from In Love with a Dark Stranger. He hides his face behind a mask to protect his identity. He's mysterious, adventurous and manages to carry on a relationship with the heroine without revealing what he looks like. He's driven by the need to protect his country at any cost.
If you could pick any celebrity to be on the cover of your book, who would it be and why?
I would choose Halle Berry for the heroine on the cover of In Deep Kimchi because she reminds me a lot of Shaundra. She has the type of face that ageless. Hopefully, if the book is ever turned into a movie they would consider casting her as the lead.
What was your inspiration for In Deep Kimchi
My own life was my inspiration for In Deep Kimchi. For the last year I've been following the career of a Korean pop group named DBSK (They're called Tohoshiki in Korea, TVXQ in Japan and DBSK in America.) and I have the hots for one of the singers, Micky Yoochun. Everyone, including my children tease me since he's young enough to be my son. One of the ladies in my office asked me what would I do if I got a chance to be with him and that's when I got the idea to do In Deep Kimchi. You have to read the entire book to find out the answer.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
That I must listen to music while I write. It sets the mood for the story. So my MP3 players are loaded with songs from the 70s and 80s.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I think I first considered myself a writer when I saw my first by-line. But I only actually told anyone outside the family after I sold a couple of manuscripts.
If you had a warning label, what would it say?
Caution: Female is hotter than she appears!
What's the most interesting obscure fact you know?
That according to the Aztec Calendar the world is supposed to end on December 21, 2012.
Which one of the characters you've created is most like you?
Shaundra Morrison of In Deep Kimchi. I gave her all my fears and phobias and most of my bad habits. She expresses all my feelings toward family, friends and life. We have the same attitude and we both love the same type of men.
What can your fans look forward to in the next twelve months from you?
Look forward to my upcoming book, Cherish, with Phaze Books under the pen name Shawn Bailey. It's a coming of age story about two young men who discover love in the strangest place. Also later this month Total E-bound is releasing Someone to Depend on, and in March, Moongypsy Press is releasing Curse, an epic horror novel set in New Orleans. I'm also dabbling in Y/A for the upcoming year. I've written the first book in the series and I really love the characters. I'm also working on the follow up books to In Deep Kimchi and In Love with a Dark Stranger.
If you could ask readers any one question, what would it be?
Oh, that's easy, it just came up today. When you purchase books do you do so because you like the cover art or do you chose a book because you like the author?
Is there anything else you would like to add today?
I would just like to thank you for having me as your guest today, and to my fans I'd like to thank you for buying my books and visiting with me on FaceBook.
Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer some questions for us today Imari
Interviewed by: Tammy