Interview with Jade Kerrion

Jade Kerrion

Interview Date: 9/8/2012


Jade Kerrion, author of the award-winning science-fiction/dystopian novel, Perfection Unleashed, first developed a loyal reader base with her fan fiction series based on the MMORPG Guild Wars. She was accused of keeping her readers up at night, distracting them from work, housework, homework, and (far worse), from actually playing Guild Wars. And then she wondered why just screw up the time management skills of gamers? Why not aspire to screw everyone else up too? So here she is, writing books that aspire to keep you from doing anything else useful with your time. She lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida with her wonderfully supportive husband and her two young sons, Saint and Angel, (no, those aren't their real names, but they are like saints and angels, except when they're not.)

Kev's response: Here here to keeping readers up!

When did you start writing, and was there a significant event that prompted you to do so?

I started at the age of thirteen when my school essays were returned to me with a bunch of “A”s scrawled over the top. Teenagers are impressionable. Being much more impressionable than most, and believing that my teachers knew what they were doing, I figured I was destined to be a writer. It’s only taken me tens of thousands of hours of work since then to be halfway decent at writing (and I’m still learning each day), but one has to start somewhere.

If you could have one superpower, what would it? (Assuming said power would be reasonably powerful.)

The ability to transform matter. For example, if you were falling from a building, I could save your life by transforming asphalt into an air mattress. More practically, however, I could transform leftover pizza into sushi, or spin air into fabric to increase the size of my denim jeans. In theory, I’d never have to buy anything ever again, which I suppose makes irrelevant my ability to turn dirt into gold…

Kev's response: But gold is shiny...

Do you have a favorite superhero from novels, comics, or movies?

Iron Man. A few years ago, if you’d asked me to describe Iron Man, I might have been able to tell you that it was a Marvel superhero with a red and yellow suit of armor. Then I’d give you a blank look and say, “What? That’s not enough information for you?” However, Robert Downey, Jr.’s characterization of Tony Stark and Iron Man in the Iron Man series and the Avengers movie has nailed him down as my favorite superhero (at least for now.) How can you not like the narcissistic genius, billionaire playboy who possesses cutting wit and a well-concealed streak of heroism?

Kev's response: Now that's interesting. Iron Man is one of my favorite superheroes as well, but not just for intellect, money, and being a playboy, but rather for his ability to create extreme-tech items. (It's been described before as a distinct superpower, the crafting thing.)

Where do you get your inspiration for writing? What motivates you?

What motivates me? The characters in my head who wake me up at 3 a.m. and say “Please tell my story, or I swear I’ll make you wake up with a migraine.” They are nuisances, but they’re my nuisances. Besides, if they left, I’d be lonely since there wouldn’t be any more voices in my head.

Kev's response: You have mean characters!

Do you pre-plan your stories, or are you a by-the-seat-of-the-pants style writer?

I was a management consultant in a former life, and I’m trained never to answer “this or that” questions directly. The answer, always, is “it depends.” I usually have a sense of the major story arcs and where they should end up, but I’m amenable to directional changes along the way. I once deleted the last third of “Perfection Unleashed” when a beta reader told me that it “sucked” (and yes, that is a technical term used to describe writing…bad writing) and replaced it with something significantly better.

Do you write only when inspired, or do you have a set schedule where you sit down to write?

I don’t have a set schedule, but neither do I write only when inspired. (See, I told you I never answer questions directly…) Actually, I’m slightly obsessed. I write during most of my free moments, and if I’m not writing, I’m thinking about my stories and what to write next. I plan out entire scenes and conversations mentally, and stop just short of editing the sentence in my head. It’s the voices in my head, I tell you. They don’t leave me alone.

Kev's response: You're welcome to come visit me in the, uh, facility. I'm strongly obsessed ... and driven. I definitely understand.

Do you have a favorite genre to write in? To read?

I write science-fiction / dystopian / fantasy, but read across a wide variety of genres, depending on my mood. Romances are a great way to chill out and pass the time, especially when you’re in the mood for a happy ending.

Kev's response: Trying to restrain myself...

What do you enjoy the most about writing?

The creative process. I write the movie that I see in my head. It’s amazing to see the words take shape on paper and realize that it’s bringing to life something that had previously only existed for me. My readers have likened my novels to action movies, anime, and graphic novels—that’s a huge compliment. That tells me I actually succeeded in sharing with them the movie in my mind.

Is there any part of writing that you don't enjoy?

No, I think I enjoy it all. Even editing which is slow and sometimes frustrating, but the end result is usually worth it.

Can you tell me something odd about yourself?

Well, most things about me are odd…oh, you mean something really odd? Well, I realized that my then-boyfriend was THE ONE when I realized I was capable of ignoring him. Sounds crazy? No, not really. You see, I’m a highly private person. My “public” persona is always in play when I’m around others, even around lifelong friends. I need time alone (entirely alone) to recharge my energy. However, when I was alone with my then-boyfriend, I found that I could actually recharge my energy. My conscious mind had started ignoring him because he was an accepted part of my private world, I knew then he was THE ONE. Of course, I married him. You don’t let a gem like that go. ?

Kev's response: That's awesome! (And again, I must refrain from saying the double meaning of things that come to mind.) As far as not letting go, I cannot relate to that, as I'm not currently in a relationship, and did let the last slip away.

Do you write one story at a time, or do you have several novels in the works at one time?

I usually work on a story at a time, although once a story is in the editing stage, I’ll start on the next. In November of each year, I typically take a break from whatever story I’m writing at that time, and take part in NaNoWriMo.

In my evil plot to take over the world, do you advise I use highly intelligent, self-motivated minions, or simple ones, and why?

Highly intelligent, self-motivated minions, of course. How else can you make trouble for yourself and have a story worth telling later? What? You want it to be easy? Easy is boring, as they say.

Kev's response: I guess I could always pit them against each other as well...

Where do you see the future as far as paper books versus digital e-books?

I think both will coexist for a long time. I personally favor digital e-books. For one, they’re usually cheaper than their paper counterparts, and for another, they keep me from adding additional bookshelves to my already very crowded house. I suspect that my children and their generation will likely favor e-books. Their best friends now are the iPad and Kindle Fire. They’re growing up on e-books, whereas I grew up on paper books and still waver between them.

Kev's response: Aye, tablets are changing everything in this regard.

What are your current projects?

“Perfect Betrayal” and “Perfect Weapon”, books two and three of the Double Helix series, are currently in their final pre-publication stages, with a planned release date of late November 2012. I’ve just started writing the next book in the series (as yet untitled), and in November, I plan to write a YA/crossover spinoff of the Double Helix series.

Do you have any advice for others about self-publishing?

Invest time in understand the multi-step process and your options. There are lots of great sites that offer advice to folks who are just starting out in self-publishing. Be prepared to spend a lot of time getting good at doing or managing the various elements of self-publishing. You don’t have to do it all on your own (for example, I hired an editor and cover artist), but you still need to manage them and make sure the work they deliver meets your expectations.

Kev's response: Editors really do have to be someone who is "not us." I went with designing my own covers (for good or ill) after a bad experience with a potential artist.

Do you have any online sites where readers can find out more about you (and your books)?

My readers can find me online at I’m also available on Facebook and Twitter. Thank you, Kevin, for hosting me on your blog! I appreciate this wonderful opportunity to meet your readers and fans.

Kev's response: Jade, thank you much for joining me! I hope the trilogy and spinoff go well!

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