Jade Lee is visiting with us today on Make-Believe Mondays. Jade gave an excellent workshop at the Romance Writers of America conference last year, where I met her for the first time. I'm happy to have her with us today.
Jade, first, tell us a little bit about the manuscript you’re working on now.
Jade: I’m working on the final revisions for Tempted Tigress, my June 2007 book. It’s probably the last of the Tigress series for a while. I need a break from dark Asian sensuality! (I’m thinking of wandering into funny, contemporary Asian sensuality!). Anyway, Tempted Tigress is a little different from the other tigress books. It’s still about a form of Tantrism (sex leading to the ultimate religious experience) but this time it’s more of an adventure story. A white woman is trying to escape China only to run afoul of the Imperial Enforcer! (yes I made up that name, but it’s still fun!) He’s the man appointed by the Emperor to get rid of opium in China. No small task. And what else would a white woman be doing in the middle of China but running drugs? Hmmm…well, she might be learning about her sexuality with a sexy Chinese cop!
Debra: That is fun! I can't wait to read it!
Ray Bradbury said, “We are cups, constantly being filled. The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out.” How do you keep your creative cup filled?
Jade: I read. I rollerblade. I daydream. But mostly I watch tv and read.
Debra: Is there a point when your characters begin to come alive and you can see and hear them?
Jade: About the time Stephen Spielberg calls and says he wants to make a movie from my book and has already got Jet Li to play my hero. No, actually, very early. Before I even start, I have to have a good idea of who the people are. I’m not always so sure what they’re going to DO, but I do know who they are.
Debra: Oh, I hope you get that call! That would be awesome!
For some writers, dreams play a role in creating fiction. Has this been true for you? Have you ever dreamed a scene or an image that later wound up in one of your books?
Jade: Something always gives me the beginning of the story. A long time ago, I had the idea of my hero and heroine making out behind a couch (in secret) when another couple comes into the room to make out. It ended up in No Place for a Lady by Katherine Greyle (my other, older pseudonym).
And of course, there’s my famous acupuncture scene that begins Burning Tigress. My heroine speeds around a corner after her young brother who has just stormed into the hero’s bedroom (hero is their First Boy servant). And the hero—Ken Jin—has done acupuncture on his male organ. Charlotte’s first thought is: What an enormous penis! Her second thought is: Why is he sticking needles into his enormous penis? That scene just cracked me up and so I built a story from there.
Debra: That cracks me up too. :) Puts acupuncture in a whole new light!
As a child did any particular book or author pull you into their imaginary world?
Jade: ALWAYS! I loved the Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis. I wrote my undergraduate thesis on the books. LOVE NARNIA!! It was my Harry Potter. Read the books over and over and over. Made up stories and animals to play with there. Had hundreds of daydream hours in Narnia.
Debra: Narnia was one of my favorites too.
Is there anything else you would like to add about the role of imagination, and dreams in creating fiction? Any other message for our readers?
Jade: Take time out to be quiet, to settle with your own thoughts, and to daydream. Who knows what you might discover lurking right there in your own head!
Finally, make sure to visit my website: www.jadeleeauthor.com (I’ve got the author part in there to distinguish me from jade lee the porn star.) Yes, there really is one!
Debra: I can just imagine the email inquiries you get!
Jade: And look for my latest 2 books, both just came out in January. Cornered Tigress by Jade Lee and then for you fans of Crimson City, I have a novella in the new Shards of Crimson anthology. I hope both stories feed the tigress in you!
Debra: Jade, thank you for joining us here on this Make-believe Monday to share a little bit of the magic of writing with our readers.