Ultimate Interview - with Jessica Bell!

GUYS! Guess what? It's time, y'all! It's time! My Ultimate Interview Contest, held to celebrate reaching 100 followers, was all about featuring one awesome writer/blogger in an interview - with questions asked by (and linked to) other bloggers. Y'all gave some GREAT responses and also helped me pick the winner, which was extra helpings of awesomesauce all around.

So, without further ado, I'm excited to welcome said winner, Jessica Bell, whom we all know as the riotous

Yep, that lovely lass is our own Alliterative Allomorph, who, besides being the winner of the Ultimate Interview Contest, also lives in Athens, Greece (how freakin' cool is that??) after growing up in Melbourne, Australia. The offspring of two gothic rock musicians who took her along as they moseyed between Australia and Europe, Jessica is also a helluva musician in her own right.
Her ability to write music soon stimulated an enthusiasm for literature that blossomed during her years at Latrobe University and ensuing career as an editor. In 2007, Jessica left her post at an English language teaching publisher to go it alone as a freelancing writer/editor who works for Cengage Learning, Macmillan Education, Education First, Pearson/Longman and Signature Manuscripts. In addition to her freelance and musical projects, Jessica is also working on a novel and a memoir while she seeks agent representation for her novel, DEAD IN THE CORNER OF MY BEDROOM. 

Her other hidden skill? The ability to come up with some intense freakin questions! Hers was the winning interview question, which went a lil something like this:

Q. Have you ever gotten sexually excited after writing a love scene and then acted upon it?

A. Well, I’m sorry to have to break it to you, but the only love scene I wrote ended in the female protagonist finding out that her husband was having an affair, so unfortunately by the end of that scene any arousal was dampened. (boo!) But I will admit to getting in the mood before writing the scene (I’ll let your imagination fill in the details) … well it’s gotta be realistic, right? Hahaha, sorry, is that a disappointing answer? (Boo! Again!)

[Zoe interrupts to say that the "boos" are Jessica's, not mine :D. Although I'll give it a "dammit!" because I was hoping for some saucy stuff!!! *hauls mind, dripping and stinky, out of the gutter*]

Okay, folks! The rest of the interview questions come courtesy of the bloggers whose questions got the highest response in my contest question poll:

Q. From Roland Yeomans at Writing in the Crosshairs: When the room is dark and your heart says 'give up', whose voice do you hear next, and what does it say?

A. My mother’s. Through all her difficulties surviving benzodiazepine withdrawal when I was a kid, she still managed to drill ‘If there’s a will there’s a way’ into my head practically every day. For a mother who was never in the right frame of mind, she did a pretty damn good job of pushing me in the right direction. Yes, I strayed for a while, but eventually pulled myself together. So I guess my mother is responsible for both my rebellion and getting my priorities straight. She was an awfully brave woman, and she is living proof that if there’s a will there’s a way. If you knew what she went through, you’d understand, but it’s a REALLY long explanation.

Q. From Shannon Messenger at Ramblings of a Wannabe Scribe: Orlando Bloom - sexier as a pirate or an elf? (and why?)

A. You’ve got to be kidding me. I don’t see any sexual attraction to him whatsoever. As a pirate he reminds me of an ex-boyfriend of mine - obviously ‘ex’ for a reason. As an elf, he reminds me of a wannabe metal head too embarrassed to go whole hog with the black make-up. I’m a Johnny Depp gal from a very young age :) - from the age where I would stick socks in my top to impress Mr. Depp, who was pinned up on my wardrobe.

Q. From Lydia Kang at The Word Is My Oyster: Who would you NOT want reading your shiny new novel?

A. LOL. Um, my ex employers. I don’t say very nice things about them. But that’s totally my protagonist’s opinion, not mine! (wink wink)

Q. From Courtney Barr at Southern Princess: Is there any subject that disturbs you so much that you WON'T write about it? If so, why?

A. Not that I’m aware of. I haven’t tried to write anything disturbing to that degree. Mind you, I’m having difficulty with my memoir at the moment because I slip into a state of depression I just don’t want to be in. I think my memoir is going to take a VERY VERY long time. My memoir is primarily about growing up with a drug addicted (and rock musician) mother and how her addiction and eventual never-ending drug withdrawal basically prevented me leading what most would call a ‘normal’ childhood. Hate going back to that place. But it is a very interesting story and I hope that one day I can get it done. [Zoe interrupts again: damn I want to read that! Sound like one compelling story. Kudos to Jessica for being brave enough to face it!]

Q. From Justine Dell at...Justine Dell: Tell us about the time when you almost gave up.

A. Um, regarding writing? I haven’t yet. I’ve been pushing myself for five years now, and I’m still determined. But I did almost give up living when I was a teenager and wanted to be free of my mother. But I could write a whole book about that (probably why I am), so you’ll just have to wait till I get published. Can you wait twenty years? LOL

On a happier note … Who wants Zoe to answer these questions as well? A show of hands please … Ok, let me count … Wow, Zoe, looks like there’s over a hundred hands here … :D

[Zoe's comment: uh...I'mma get back to y'all on that one, lol!]

But there you have it! Some really awesome interview questions + a whole rack of awesome bloggers = so much fun! Jessica, thanks so much for stopping by (that golden flash drive's in the mail tomorrow I SWEAR, lol)!

Also thanks so SO much to everyone for participating - this was one of my favorite blog moments, ever. So thanks for becoming followers and supporting my blog - I'm truly humbled and grateful. Remember, folks, keep payin' it forward - you never know what lonely writer you might comfort with a comment :D Thanks!!


Alesa Warcan | June 3, 2010 at 7:19 AM

Hehehe... Deftly answered Jessica.
And professionally interviewed Zoe... Methinks you're no stranger to asking questions. ;j

Rock on, both of you.

BTW, my hand was up in the air too at Allomo's question.

The Alliterative Allomorph | June 3, 2010 at 7:35 AM

Awesome! Thanks again Zoe! T'was a pleasurooni :)

salarsenッ | June 3, 2010 at 7:41 AM

Great interview, Zoe. Over from Jess's abode. Hey Jess, Mr. Depp...ahh...

Liza | June 3, 2010 at 7:46 AM

Fun Jessica. Great job Zoe!

Vicki Rocho | June 3, 2010 at 7:51 AM

Awesome...just when I *thought* I knew what the answers were gonna be, she threw a bunch of curve balls.

Great job guys!

Jen | June 3, 2010 at 8:04 AM

LOVED IT JESS! This was so much fun. You are always an outside the box kind of thinker and it's what I love best about you! Thanks Zoe for hosting this awesome interview!

JustineDell | June 3, 2010 at 8:13 AM

Oh, fun!! I <3 interviews!! The questions are awesome and Jess's answers are great!


My hand was up for you too, Zoe.

~Nicole Ducleroir~ | June 3, 2010 at 8:31 AM

I love Jessica to pieces and her beautiful mind blows me away. Everything she writes, be it her songs, poetry, short fiction, blog posts -- hell, even blog post comments! -- illustrates her prolific and artistic style. Thanks for highlighting her, Zoe!

Jess~ That gold flash drive is the bomb! Congrats on winning it!

Dawn | June 3, 2010 at 9:29 AM

Great interview! What fun :-)

Lindsay (a.k.a Isabella) | June 3, 2010 at 9:51 AM

Hehee. Great interview. :)
Oh, and Jessica, I'm a Johnny Depp gal too. ;)

Candyland | June 3, 2010 at 9:59 AM

*loves Jess even more*
Fantastic interview. She's one of the coolest, kick-ass (and braver than she realizes) chick's I've ever met.
(dare I say the word, kudos??!)

Jaydee Morgan | June 3, 2010 at 10:04 AM

Great interview and love the questions that were picked! Both of you did such a great job on a really unique and fun contest.

Sangu | June 3, 2010 at 10:19 AM

Ooooh, great interview! This was such fun to read!

I'm still reeling in envy over that gold flash drive.

Carolyn V. | June 3, 2010 at 10:20 AM

Sweet! Great interview Zoe!

Mary McDonald | June 3, 2010 at 10:36 AM

Interesting interview! Love the questions.

Matthew Rush | June 3, 2010 at 12:12 PM

Great interview, great questions ... great blog! Thanks Zoe and Jessica, love you ladies!

arlee bird | June 3, 2010 at 1:37 PM

Very interesting interview approach and it's always so good to get to know fellow bloggers better.
Jessica, look forward to the memoir if I'm still around then.

Zoe -- you are very creative. Thanks for this unique interview.

Tossing It Out

Crimey | June 3, 2010 at 1:46 PM

Zoe, nice to find a new cool blog.
I'm over from Jessica's blog. Great interview.

Watery Tart | June 3, 2010 at 1:55 PM

What a FABULOUSLY creative interview! Loved it! Thank you, Jessica (great answers), and Thank you Zoe for putting it together!

Shannon O'Donnell | June 3, 2010 at 2:34 PM

Do you really think Orlando Bloom is not attractive?! Wow.

This was soooooo much fun! Great idea, Zoe, and great/brave answers, Jessica! :-)

Zoe C. Courtman | June 3, 2010 at 4:30 PM

GUYS! How much do you freakin' RAWK! Hands down, this is one of my favorite blog moments ever! Thanks everyone so so much for participating in the contest, voting on the interview questions, popping over from Jessica's blog and just generally being so freakin cool. Thank you so much!!! <3

Ann | June 3, 2010 at 5:47 PM

Well done again! Your replies put a smile on my face.

Roland D. Yeomans | June 3, 2010 at 6:41 PM

You had a great idea, Zoe, and you ran with it even better. Jessica, as always, is funny yet thoughtful at the same time.

The only subject I won't touch in my work is child abuse. As a former counselor to abused children, I have too many ugly memories of my clients' anguish and scars.

Have a great weekend, Roland

Piedmont Writer | June 3, 2010 at 6:58 PM

Great job you guys! Thanks for doing this! It's always great to see another person wrangling the writing life.

Lydia Kang | June 3, 2010 at 10:24 PM

Shweet interview!
Okay, the Orlando Bloom stuff..well, to each her own taste, right?
Thanks Zoe and AA!
And Zoe, you must answer those questions! I'm raising my hand! See???

Slamdunk | June 3, 2010 at 11:41 PM

Pirate or elf? Just too funny.

Mobile Phones | June 4, 2010 at 3:04 AM

Very nice and excellent post to get answers for typical interview questions.

interview questions

India Drummond | June 4, 2010 at 4:50 AM

Love the interview! What a great idea to have others contribute some of the questions!

Slushpile Slut | June 4, 2010 at 9:14 AM

Great interview Zoe! I stalker love Jessica Bell...She is the Shit and so talented too!!

Roland D. Yeomans | June 4, 2010 at 1:14 PM

Hey, Zoe, I thought you had entered today's DREAM SEQUENCE blogfest held by Amalia? I was looking forward to your entry. Mine, of course, is brilliant. Snicker. Roland

Zoe C. Courtman | June 4, 2010 at 5:26 PM

OMG - thanks everyone for your AWESOME freakin comments! Thanks to Jessica for being such a great sport - and thanks to you guys for reading along, every time. Group hug!! And hey, Roland. lol. Yeah, I was supposed to be doing the dream sequence thing, but then my modem bit the dust yesterday. Sigh. Back up at a coffeehouse at the moment, but it'll be a couple days before I'm back on with any regularity. Oy.

elizabeth mueller | June 6, 2010 at 9:01 PM

Thank you, Zoe, for doing this awesome cool contest! fun fun fun!!!

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