IN FINA’S OWN WORDS…I’m a young lesbian who believes in family and doing what it takes to achieve your dreams. I believe people should be comfortable with themselves and explore all the things that life has to offer. As far as erotica goes, traditional sex is outdated. I write about the things people should at least try for themselves and then see what happens.
How long have you been writing and how did you get started?
I’ve been writing for about two years. I actually got started at work. I was working at a call center, and my supervisor micro-managed everybody and I hated it. So between calls, I would write a story out of anger and it would come out okay to me. I’d let my friend who sat behind me, who was actually straight, read it and she liked it. She made a joke saying, “Okay, Little Zane.” Oh my God! To hear someone compare me to Zane, one of my shero writers was like WOW! So I continued to write. That same friend introduced me to MySpace. I thought only lesbians would want to read my stories so I only approved or requested the ones that acknowledged they were lesbian on their page–but that quickly changed. After my first signing, I created a page for everybody because at my first book signing, almost all the people that purchased my book made a point in letting me know they were not lesbian.
Give a brief description of your debut novel, You Think You Know.
It’s simply just when you think you know, you have no idea about what really goes on behind closed doors.
How did you create the concept for this novel?
So many people assume what it’s like living your life as a lesbian. I wanted to have them say, “Wow, I wouldn’t have ever thought it was like that.”
How has the reception been for You Think You Know?
So far it’s been wonderful. I love the questions I get from everybody asking me about a few of the stories and what will happen to certain characters.
What was your inspiration for these erotic short stories?
I just wanted to write based on what I’ve seen in lesbian relationships – the “Real” as I call it. Not to say anyone who writes erotica isn’t real, but I don’t have a mound, I have a vagina. I didn’t want to candy coat any of it.
Sistahs on the Shelf wants to know: How much do these stories resemble your life?
[About] 20% resembles my life because I’ve been in some of the situations. Most are from things I’ve seen. I’m always watching for a new story, 🙂 laughing. Some of it I just want to happen in my life.
According to your bio, you were apprehensive about writing a book dealing exclusively with lesbian erotica.Why?
I didn’t know how my family would take it. My mother is a preacher. All I thought about was what she says all the time. “Roo,” which is one of my childhood nicknames, “how am I going to be preaching the word of God to people and my daughter is the Queen Lesbian?” I guess she would say that because ever since I told her that I’m a lesbian, I didn’t care who else knew.
The synopsis of You Think You Know mentions “good old fashioned wholesome ladies.” Do you believe they still exist?
Yes, of course they exist. But to me those are the ladies that are always single, never go out anywhere, they are always talking about a deadline at work, or they have a spouse/partner who is cheating on them.
What’s erotic to you?
Anything that’s not candy coated, at least that’s what my readers are getting.
Have you ever been caught up in a Lesbian Circle of Destruction?
Of course. I would love to meet a lesbian that hasn’t been in the Circle of Destruction, but that would probably be one of those “good old fashioned wholesome ladies” who is probably single —- laughing to myself about that answer.
You Think You Know has some very bold ladies in its pages. How can women take charge of their sexuality to become more satisfied?
Take charge by acknowledging what you really want in the bedroom. Don’t be shy. Shyness keeps you wondering what could have been and calling other people “freaks.” A bold woman sits back and figures out what her next great adventure will look like.
Any advice for single black lesbians?
Test the water with your finger, foot, arm, or your head if you have to. Bend down and wet your hair, but don’t jump in every pool you see.
Sexual roles, like studs and femmes, are very defined in You Think You Know. How important do you think roles are in black lesbian relationships?
I can’t speak for all black lesbian relationships, but in Georgia, your role is very defined. I normally hear the older lesbians use the words “I’m just me” when defining their roles. Others refuse to call themselves a woman because they think and act like men. Roles are ok, but let’s be real. I’ve never known a woman who didn’t just want to lay it down every now and then.
What are you working on next?
Completing the next book. Readers of You Think You Know want answers to some of the stories.
What is a typical day like for you?
When I get up, I help my studsband get ready for work and the kids off to school. Then I check my email and MySpace and then, depending on the day, I go to school myself or I just write, cook, clean…all the things a mother and spouse does when everyone else isn’t home.
What do you do for fun?
I love to shop, read, and spend time with my family. It’s rare that we are all together so when we are, we are so silly.
What are your favorite books?
ADDICTED, IF I RULED THE WORLD, G-SPOT, CANDY LICKER, FLYYGIRL, THE COLDEST WINTER EVER, NAUGHTY OR NASTY, MILK IN MY COFFEE, GOD’S GIFT TO WOMEN, DON’T MAKE A BLACK WOMAN TAKE OFF HER EARRINGS, JUST SAY NO.
Favorite authors? Noire, Zane hands down, but I’m a fan of Fiona Zedde.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
God willing, I see myself as a successful author and also a successful nurse.
What motivates you to write?
Just watching African-American lesbian relationships and some of the conversations that come out of them.
What piece of advice can you share with aspiring writers?
Even if it seems like your break will never come, just keep trying.
Why do you feel it’s important for black lesbians to tell their own stories, as you did with You Think You Know?
I feel your story could be someone else’s testimony and maybe they are too scared to say how they really feel.
Interviewed December 2008