Friday, February 7, 2014

Happy Single Highlight: FIONA ZEDDE

How long have you been single and why?
I’ve been single for almost two years now, and have chosen to remain so because it feels good. Being single gives me the time and space to indulge my selfish tendencies.

Has being single offered you any personal growth opportunities? No more or less than when I was part of a couple. I’m always growing, changing, and moving forward in my evolution toward becoming a better person.

You have published 12 books. What a great accomplishment! How long have you been writing and what inspires you? I’ve been writing since I was a child, but published my first story in high school, my first internationally distributed short story in 2004, and my first novel in 2005. As for inspiration, it comes to me in all forms; from conversations, dreams, travel, even silence. Nearly anything, if looked at the right way, has some spark of a story in it. My lastest novel, Broken in Soft Places, was actually my graduate thesis. I wanted to bring my past experiences in undergraduate school together with my experiences in Atlanta, because they were so different but also very complimentary to each other. Broken in Soft Places started off being that, but like with any creative process it went an unexpected direction.

How important is writing to being Fiona Zedde? It is everything. The reason I say that is because “Fiona Zedde” is a pseudonym I created. Writing is almost as important to the real me, Fiona Lewis. It’s my therapy, my job, my escape, and my excuse to avoid the world when I’m feeling like a hermit.

Many of your novels are erotic in nature. Talk about the importance of sensuality and eroticism for you as a writer and a feminist. For me, the erotic is an integral part of life. It is healing, life-giving,
sustaining, and good for your skin. We live in our bodies and should celebrate and honor the pleasures that they bring us, as much as we honor and celebrate our souls, spirits, and deepest selves. And the erotic is not always about sex, not always about sharing your body with another; rather it is acknowledging and blessing our physical selves, opening up to bodily pleasures of all sorts whether it’s lying in the sun, tasting the rain, or spending time with your favorite vibrator. Where my work is concerned, I’ve always been in love with the idea of love. This is why I gravitated toward writing romances. And in those romances, there is always sex and sensuality. Being naked to each other under the eyes of the reader is one way for the couples (or threesomes or foursomes) that I write about to open themselves up more fully to each other and share parts of themselves.

Are you similar to any of the characters in your books? If so, which one and how so? If I’m similar to any of them, I’d say it’s Sinclair from my first novel, Bliss. She is open to all of life’s experiences. She wants passion and love, but is also naïve and easily led astray.

As a fellow Aquarius, I can relate to this idea of being naive for love. Would you say that you are still naive? I still feel the same. I idealize love and relationships in general. However, I realize that relationships take a lot of work. You have to get down in the dirt and work it! That has reshaped some of my naivete. 

You are Jamaican born. How does that influence you as an out lesbian living in Atlanta, Georgia? It means not taking being out for granted. I’ve been privileged to see how some LGBT people in Jamaica live – closeted or in fear or without fulfilling intimate relationships – and feel lucky every day that I am able to live my life as I choose.

The term “create love” means so many things to different people. What does “creating love” mean for you? Creating Love means to be the love you want to see in the world. Be the kindness, the fellow-feeling, the passion, the romance, the humanity, the altruism. Once you put what you want out there, you will trigger it in others around you.

As you envision yourself partnered again, what is most important in choosing your next mate? One of the most important things to me in a partner has always been a sense of humor. When you can laugh at life, things usually work out just fine. Where are with your desire to be in a relationship? If it happens it happens but I am not necessarily seeking partnership. I feel like I need that selfish space to create. When I am in a partnership some of that creative energy can shift away from my work. Sometimes I have a hard time with that balance.

What advice would you give to women who are embracing singlehood? Have fun! Do all those things for yourself that sometimes get neglected while in a couple. Pamper yourself. Stay in bed until three in the afternoon with your favorite book if you feel like it. Enjoy these sweet days of luxurious self pleasure.

You can learn more about Fiona Zedde at  www.fionazedde.com
or email: f.zedde@gmail.com
Jamaican-born Fiona Zedde currently lives and writes in Atlanta, Georgia. She is the author of several novellas and novels of lesbian love and desire, including the Lambda Literary Award finalists Bliss and Every Dark Desire. Her novel, Dangerous Pleasures, was winner of the About.com Readers’ Choice Award for Best Lesbian Novel or Memoir of 2012.

Her short fiction has appeared in various anthologies including the Cleis Press Best Lesbian Erotica series, Wicked: Sexy Tales of Legendary Lovers, Iridescence: Sensuous Shades of Lesbian Erotica, and Fist of the Spider Woman.

Writing under the name "Fiona Lewis," she has also published a novel of young adult fiction called Dreaming in Color with Tiny Satchel Press. Her latest novel, Broken in Soft Places, is available now.

**PHOTO CREDITS: TEKA Photography (1 & 4) and She-Driven Photography (2 & 3)

We appreciate you sharing you words and your heart with us a Create Love for Women Who Love Women. We wish you great success in all of your endeavors!
Imani Evans
SharRon Jamison 
  






6 comments:

  1. As a fan of Fiona's writing, I was really excited to see this article. Love the questions asked and the fluid way in which the answers are given. I especially loved, "... the erotic is an integral part of life. It is healing, life-giving, sustaining, and good for your skin (YES!!!). We live in our bodies and should celebrate and honor the pleasures that they bring us, as much as we honor and celebrate our souls, spirits, and deepest selves.." #THIS!

    Thank you for sharing Fiona, great interview Imani!

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  2. Oh that comment!! I love it too. "Honor the pleasures" Oh, yes, Fiona!!

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  3. What an amazing article..I love getting bits and pieces of Fiona

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  4. I AM BRONX NYC [DJTOBEY THOMAS] WHAT A AMAZING WRITING THANKS FOR BEING MY FRIEND ON FB FIONA UARE SO BEAUTIFUL INSIDE AND OUT GOD GIFT MUCH LOVE MY NUBIAN SISTER

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  5. "Enjoy these sweet days of luxurious self pleasure". Oh my goodness. LOVE LOVE LOVE this!

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