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Saturday, July 23, 2011
Author Interview: Amarinda Jones
Whipped Cream is pleased to welcome Amarinda Jones, all the way from "Down Under" to visit with us today. If Not for You will be released soon from Evernight Publishing. In addition to being a prolific writer, she is also the owner of Scarlet Harlot Publishing, a new publishing company that is just getting started.
From her official bio: "Amarinda believes anything is possible and sometimes just asking for the impossible will surprise someone enough that they will give it to you. Writing is like that. Put it out there and wait for a response. There is always the possibility you may fall on your ass, but after all, that's what cellulite is for. Amarinda believes in taking chances, speaking her mind and aging disgracefully. Twenty years from now she plans on being the neighborhood witch that all the kids are scared of. But then, everyone has to have a hobby."
Amarinda told me she thinks one of the biggest public misconceptions about erotica is that there's not a difference between erotica and porn.
"I believe that erotica, while having similar connotations to porn, is more about writing sex with emotion as opposed to writing sex for the sake of an orgasm."
Another misconception is that erotica writers are crazy, lustful women who have hot and cold naked men running through the house.
"That's only on a Saturday and Wednesday," she assured me.
Amarinda tries to write from her own life experiences.
"If I’ve lived it, felt it, tasted it and believe in it then I’ll write it. I can’t write something I have experienced," she said.
For the same reason, she doesn't read erotica herself--she doesn't want to be influenced by other authors.
"If a friend and fellow author asks me to read something," she told me, "I tend to skip the sex scenes because I’m never going to live their experiences and I like to write purely from my own."
Her own experience is also the best research she knows.
"If I’ve lived it, I can write it," she said. "The mind is a wondrous thing but without practice, inbuilt knowledge and a sense of humor a story is just going to be flat and dull."
Amarinda didn't actually start off to write erotica, though. She wrote three non-erotic novels and someone asked her, "Hey, can you write sex?"
"I thought, 'Don't know, not sure, and what the heck? I'll try,'" she explained. "I'm a great believer at having a go at everything."
The first book she wrote was Rose Perfect, a straight romance.
"I sent it off and got some really nice constructive rejections, all to do with there being no sex in the book. A week or so after those, I got a contract from a publisher who liked the story because there was an actual story."
"What is your favorite erotic book?" I wondered.
"The Story of O. It’s a very harsh, primitive, raw story about sex, domination and what a woman craves. It’s also about breaking free from the constraints of society and doing what’s right for you."
There are some limits about what types of things Amarinda will write about--she will not write about incest, pedophilia, or animals.
"I do not care what anyone says," she told me. "None of these are ever going to be acceptable and none are erotic."
" What does your family think of your writing?" I asked. "Do they read it?"
"My family is not surprised by anything I do. If I didn’t do something out of the box they’d probably think something was wrong with me. No, they don’t read it but they like to print out the covers and show people. That’s nice."
On a personal note, Amarinda would not choose to be anyone else but herself, because she likes being who she is.
"I'm flawed and annoying," she admitted, "but I enjoy that."
" If you had to pierce a body part, what would you pierce and why?" I wondered. "What about body piercing is sexy?"
"Interesting question. I have 3 piercings in each ear and of late I’ve contemplated piercing my navel, clit and brow. Piercing is sexy because there’s that edge of ‘what else is she likely to do?’"
Some things you might not know about Amarinda:
~She can't bring herself to eat baked beans. In fact, she said she would rather starve first, claiming, "They're pukeable."
~Her favorite letter is A. Why? "Because it starts off the alphabet, it’s in almost every sentence and it’s sharp up the top and fat at the base…a bit like myself," she explained.
~Her strangest habit is "doing everything my own way, under my own steam even if it I know I probably can’t succeed and it’ll probably kill me trying to do it."
~Some of the things she enjoys doing when she's not writing include "renovating, gardening and wandering aimlessly enjoying life."
And, some random questions for Amarinda:
"Can you tell the difference between Coke and Pepsi?"
"They have different names."
"Have you ever known anyone who can tie a cherry stem with their tongue?"
"Yes, I am very lucky that I know a very talented man who is most excellent with his tongue."
"Painted toenails.... yes or no?"
"Yes – usually green or blue with sparkles…one must have sparkles."
"If someone were to play you in a movie, what actor would it be and why?"
"Cate Blanchett. We look nothing alike but she’s a tough minded Aussie with a lot of common sense, class and persistence."
Finally, I asked her to leave one piece of advice for new writers.
"Live life. Be daring," she said. "If you know you would do what you want to write about then do it and don’t worry about what others think. Have a thick skin, be persistent, don’t take yourself so seriously and trust no one in the writing game. Harsh? Yes, but you need to look after yourself and you’re the best person to do that."
You can keep up with Amarinda on her blog, http://amarindajones.blogspot.com