About the Author:
Jeffe (pronounced Jeff- ee) took the crooked road to writing, stopping off at neurobiology, religious studies and environmental consulting before her creative writing began appearing in places like Redbook, Puerto del Sol, Wyoming Wildlife, Under the Sun and Aeon. She has been a Ucross Foundation Fellow (2001), was a Wyoming Arts Council roster artist, when she lived in Wyoming, and received the state’s 2005 Frank Nelson Doubleday Memorial Award for a woman writer of exceptional talent in any creative writing genre and the 2007 Fellowship for Poetry.
Jeffe has contributed to several anthologies, Drive: Women’s True Stories of the Open Road. (2002), Hard Ground (2003), Bombshells (2007) and Going Green (2009). Her first book, Wyoming Trucks, True Love and the Weather Channel was published by University of New Mexico Press in 2004. An erotic novella, Petals and Thorns, came out under her pen name of Jennifer Paris in 2010, heralding yet another branch of her path, into erotica and romantic fantasy fiction.
Jeffe lives in Santa Fe, with two Maine coon cats, a border collie, plentiful free-range lizards and frequently serves as a guinea pig for an acupuncturist-in-training.
Who Is Jennifer Paris?
I was doing the “Jeffe Kennedy writing as Jennifer Paris” thing, but Angela James, my editor at Carina, said no, no, no. Since I really don’t want to “flesh out” Jennifer Paris and tweet or blog as her (she was only a cardboard cut-out anyway), I decided to retire her. However, I have one book “Petals and Thorns” that is by Jennifer Paris.
Jeffe Kennedy was brought to Butterfly-o-Meter Books by Bewitching Book Tours.
1. I’ve read 3 totally different erotica stories by you so far, all centering around some form of power play. What inspires you to write these uber-steamy scenes?
I guess I’m just fascinated by power play in all forms. Even my stories that aren’t erotica usually revolve around people attempting to exert power over each other. In the uber-steamy stuff, power becomes something intense, passionate and intimate. I never get tired of that.
2. Your characters are so unique and refreshing every time! Do you ever base them on actual people, or are they total figments of your imagination? (I’d love to get some of their numbers, lol.)
If only we had phone numbers! I have all these ideas for stories based off real people, but then that never happens. Instead these fictional characters come to life – and they’re very real to me, too. For me the characters are always what drives the story.
3. Do you feel people treat you differently because you write (shamelessly hot) erotica? Do you believe erotica gets the appreciation it should, especially power-play-centered?
That’s an interesting question. I think some other writers tend to dismiss my erotica work as not being as important as other writing, even other genres. I notice some friends just kind of pretend they don’t know about the erotica stories, I think because they don’t want to be associated. On the other hand, I’m not sure what appreciation I think it “should” get. I think Story of O is one of the most powerful books I’ve ever read. I also think there’s a lot of not-great stuff out there. But I do think that power is a fundamental part of human interaction, and the sexual aspects of that – particularly between men and women for me – are well worth exploring.
4. The worlds [of your erotica stories] are so diverse! Did you set out on a journey to write hot power-play/BDSM erotica across as many sub-genres as possible, or is it simply a coincidence that your muse took you to totally different places with each story?
It’s totally a coincidence! In some ways, “they” say not to do this, because it muddies your brand. But for me, the story is the story and it just takes place when and where it does.
5. If you’d have to pick your favorite male character from Sapphire, Feeding the Vampire and Petals and Thorns, which one would it be? What about the female characters, which is your favorite?
Ooh – that’s totally not fair. I love them all, because I’ve been inside their heads. Beast is a big character for me, from Petals & Thorns, because he lived with fear and torment under the geas for so long, but still owned who he was. And I have a soft spot for Taylor, just because she’s so tightly wrapped, but then fearless in facing what’s holding her back.
6. What’s the one thing you’re willing to share with us that you discovered about yourself while writing Sapphire, Feeding the Vampire and Petals and Thorns?
Hmm. That my kinky fantasies actually make great stories that other people like to read? That’s been a real revelation to me.
7. Are you planning on writing some steamy erotica starring something other the BDSM/power-play? What else tickles your writing fancy? 😀
Most of my work seems to have some form of steamy sex in it, though not necessarily BDSM. I think that there’s always some form of power-play involved – I guess that’s just part of my writer-gig. I like to write fantasy, too. The novel I just completed, I was trying to steer towards Young Adult (YA), by following the advice of one of my YA-writing friends. She told me my characters could have sex, but I just needed to “draw the curtains” on it. I was doing okay on all of her advice, until I hit the wedding night. I had to message her afterwards: DRAMATIC FAILURE TO CLOSE THE CURTAINS. Apparently this is just not my gig.
8. As you can tell, I’m looking forward to reading some more, when can I expect your new hot little darling to be out?
Well, I don’t have another erotica in the pipeline right now (*ducks*). Two of my editors are bugging me, so I’m writing a new erotica now. BUT, I have fantasy novel coming out in July, that is being retitled right now. It’s about a neuroscientist who accidentally falls into Faerie. There she meets Rogue, this fabulous, dark and manipulative Fae, who maneuvers her into an agreement to give him her firstborn child – which he intends to sire. A lot of the story is about their waltz of power and him trying to seduce her while she holds out. Not exactly the same thing, but you might like it.
9. You’re a writer of many genres, would you like to tell us a bit about your other projects?
Oops, I just did!
10. It has been a pleasure chatting with you, thank you for sharing your thoughts with us!
Thank you! This was a very fun interview to do!
Hope you guys liked the Q&A of doom, inspirationally named so thanks to my, shall we call it, quirkiness? hur~hur