Interview with JA Huss, author of The Dirty Ones
04 Dec 2018
What can you tell us about your new release, The Dirty Ones?
The Dirty Ones is an erotic thriller that surrounds six college friends ten years after graduation. They shared a disturbing experience in their senior year and the book opens with their story on the New York Times bestseller list under the author name “anonymous”. Three of the friends (all women) are now erotica authors and the mystery begins with the question… Which one of them published the book? But they soon realize, even though what they went through was rough, it was good too. Because it brought them all together. The book is erotic in nature and there are MFMF love scenes between the friends as they begin to remember what happened to them while discussing the book.
What or who inspired you to become an author?
I was a non-fiction writer before I wrote fiction. My graduate degree is in forensic toxicology but after I finished my master’s I decided to write science textbooks for homeschool kids. Writing was always something I could do and came easy for me but science was always a challenge and I felt like I’d be taking the easy road if I got a degree in writing, or English lit, or something like that. So I decided to be a scientist instead. I wrote my final master’s paper right about the same time I started writing these textbooks and even that was easy. I knocked out the whole thing in a long weekend. So that’s kinda how I got the idea to start writing non-fiction. And after a few years of writing these textbooks I ran out of science topics and got bored. Because I used to publish one new workbook every week for almost three years. I literally wrote hundreds of these things. It was a short leap into writing science fiction, which is the genre I first published before switching to romance. The new adult genre was just starting to take on a life of its own back in 2013 and I wrote a new adult romance called Tragic that took off and ended up being a thirteen-book series that includes several spinoffs and standalones. I mean, I hate to say that I kinda stumbled into this writing career because most of my author friends have always had this dream to be a writer, but that’s pretty much how it happened. I wanted to be an astronaut. 🙂
What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?
Wow. Best books. I like weird books because I only read science fiction and non-fiction in my spare time. But… The Great Gatsby is definitely in my top 5. As is The Good Earth. Those two books have stuck with me even though I read them way back in high school. Altered Carbon Series by Richard K Morgan is my absolute favorite science fiction series. And some recent favorites are The Red Trilogy by Linda Nagata, The Illunimae Series by Amie Koffman and Jay Kristoff, and the newly released Munmun by Jesse Andrews.
Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask?
Funny you should ask. My writing partner, Johnathan McClain, and I just started a romance podcast called Love Notes and my choice for first guest was K. Bromberg. 🙂 But if I didn’t have to stick to romance I’d choose Richard K Morgan. I think that would be a pretty dynamic interview because he seems pretty opinionated about the world and I’m pretty cynical. So… fireworks always make for a good time. Also, I think he’s a terrific writer. Like absolutely amazing. So it would very cool to hear about his process and pick his brain about things.
What’s your favorite thing about writing?
The characters. I hope one day I have time to write something very literary where it’s just nothing but character development. Something no one would buy but might win me an award. 😉
What is a typical day like for you?
Oh, work, work, work. Pretty much. If I’m writing then I’m on a deadline because I put out a lot of books. So I typically get up around 4AM, knock out a few thousand words, and then spend some time feeding my animals and walking my dogs. I live on a ranch in Colorado, so there’s daily chores. After that I typically do some marketing and mess around on socials. Pretty much every day I have a phone conversation with my writing partner, Johnathan. And if we’re writing a book, we toss that thing back and forth each morning and evening so we chat a lot on the phone to get the next chapter/scene ready for the next day. Of course there are unusual days like this week and we record podcasts. And I always seem to have some kind of craft project going. Right now I’m making hand-made journals.
What scene in The Dirty Ones was your favorite to write?
My favorite scenes are the ones that take place in this giant mansion one of the main characters lives in. The whole book kind of has a Gatsby opulence to it and this mansion was the setting for that. So I enjoyed all the scenes that took place in the mansion.
Do you have a motto, quote or philosophy you live by?
Work hard. And probably… Keep going. No matter how many times you fail, just learn something new and try again.
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