Author Interview - J. T. Baroni
Author J. T. Baroni has stopped by on my blog and answered a few questions before presenting his latest release.
Emily: How would you describe yourself?
J. T.: Tall, dark and handsome. Oh wait, that’s my protagonist in Born of Greed! Actually I consider myself to be a boring intellect who really is not that intelligent!
Emily: When did you start writing?
J. T.: As long as I can remember, I have always written short stories, poems, and song lyrics…not until recently have I gotten serious about being an author. Born of Greed is my second book, my first one is a paranormal thriller titled The Legend of Rachel Petersen.
Emily: What genre do you write and why?
J. T.: I don’t stick to one genre; rather, I challenge myself to write whatever strikes me.
Emily: What other genres would you like to try, which you haven’t done before?
J. T.: I would like to write a children’s story, and possibly a sci-fi novel. I most definitely want to write a sequel to The Legend of Rachel Petersen.
Emily: Who is your favorite author and why?
J. T.: Harold Robbins, he influenced my writing style and I think he was a great story teller.
Emily: When do you usually write and where? Do you have a certain place or writing cave?
J. T.: I have an antique computer in a small cramped den. I write when the muse tickles me, which is usually early in the morning or late at night.
Emily: Where does your inspiration come from?
J. T.: The inspiration for Born of Greed came from real-life stories of greed and corruption. I have seen first-hand how greedy siblings can rip a family apart once the parents have passed on. I used that as the nucleus of my story and then I developed my characters around that pretense and then placed them in the rock scene. The whole story just seemed to fall into place.
Emily: Have you ever written a story based on real life events?
J. T.: The Legend of Rachel Petersen is a story about a writer who finds a lone grave in the woods and writes the dead girl’s story, having drastic results. The inspiration for that book came from a lone grave I stumbled upon while deer hunting!
Emily: What is your favorite thing about writing?
J. T.: Getting published, it feels better than I had imagined it would. In a joking manner, one co-worker calls me Hemmingway, while so many other people
made the comment, “I’ve never known an author before.” I’ve always admired the aura and mystique of writers, and presume others do too. Although I am an unknown, it does feel good to be in that category.
Emily: Do you plan your book carefully before you start writing or do you let yourself go and see where the story takes you?
J. T.: I don’t use an outline; instead, I write a few pages and then I edit that, and then I write some more pages and re-edit every word from the start. Each time I sit down to write, I usually start reading and editing from the beginning of the book until I’m at least five chapters into it. That’s probably why it took one and a half years to finish my book! I also like to envision my story mentally as if I’m watching a movie, and then I do my best to describe the scenes and characters by putting words to paper.
Emily: Tell us something that might surprise our readers.
J. T.: I learned to play chess when I was 5 years old; but the real surprise is that my blind brother taught me how to play. Part of the proceeds from my first book is being donated to the Leader Dogs for the Blind.
Book title: Born of Greed
Genre: Erotica/ Romance/ Fiction
Book tagline: A Love so Innocent, A Crime so Bold.
Book blurb: Jack Trotter and Amber Fontana enjoy a platonic relationship; that is until one fateful evening when they dine at Jimmie’s Crab Shack, a tiny bistro lying in seclusion off the coastal highway outside of Santa Monica. An out of the way place, Jimmie’s legendary seafood is as notorious as the movie stars and gangsters who have wined and dined here since the Roaring Twenties. It is here, in the aura of secrecy where clandestine meetings amongst lovers; deceitful schemes; and revenge riddled plots, have abounded for decades, where Amber reveals her intimacy problem, and Trotter finds courage to reveal his own disturbing dilemma.
Together, Jack and Amber overcome their sexual inhibitions and learn how to love. Then the two lovers mastermind a plan to take what they feel is rightfully Amber’s…forty million dollars from her greedy twin sister who became a sensational singing diva due mainly to Amber’s writing her twin’s hit songs, for little pay and no recognition.
Born of Greed is a fascinating epic fictional biography where greed, love, and revenge collide with sex, drugs and rock and roll. From the tiny Midwestern Great Plains town of Elderton, Iowa, to the glitz, glamour, and wealth of California’s rock scene, Baroni takes readers on one wild ride.
She glanced at those women. Neither of them could keep their eyes off Trotter, and then a tear streamed down her cheek.
“Amber, it’s all right,” Trotter attempted to console her. Although he had no idea why she just went from laughter to tears. “I would be content having you just as a friend. Nothing more. Please don’t cry. I was only teasing about Johnny Law putting you in the slammer.”
Her tears stopped and she coughed out a laugh. “Oh Jack. You big, good-looking dummy. I’m not crying about that. I’m crying because…because…I’m crying because I could never give you what you want…or expect…from a woman. I can’t be an exotic and desirable woman, like Raquel Welch.”
Her mood swing from laughing to tears, then back to laughter baffled Trotter. In addition, he had no clue on her explanation of the tears. “But I only want your friendship. Honest. I don’t know what you’re trying to tell me.”
She was able to detect honesty in his voice, and a sympathetic sincerity in his face. Two qualities no man had ever shown her before. Perhaps this was the reason she found herself so easily confiding in him. Maybe it was the sadness she saw in his eyes, behind his smile; the same compassion she sensed when they were clinging to the ladder in the pool. The few other men she tried to be with wanted her for her money, or sex, and so far, Jack Trottson expressed no hint of wanting either from her. Contrarily, she found herself attracted to him more spiritually and emotionally, than physically. However, she did find him easy to look at, just as those two horny bitches also dining here did.
“What I’m trying to say is, my whole life is a farce. I could never satisfy your desires…like those two…sluts…over there want to do to you right now.”
Trotter looked their way, and they both hurriedly focused their gaze from him, to their clam chowder and turkey on wheat sandwiches.
“Those two over there?” He asked, using his eyes to show direction.
“Yes, Jack. Those two. They’ve been undressing you since we walked in.”
“I didn’t take notice. I was too wrapped up in our conversation, and I find you absolutely…intriguing, Amber.”
“And I find you fascinating too. That’s what scares the hell out of me and makes me envious of mature women like them.” Her hand was shaking as she picked up her soda and took a sip through the straw. “Life’s not fair! Christ! I don’t even know why I’m telling you all this.” Another tear sprang from the corner of her eye, and ran off her cheek.
Trotter reached his hands across the table and held her tiny, trembling hands in his. “It’s okay. You don’t have to tell me anymore.”
Looking into his eyes, she saw that understanding sadness again, through a smile she knew he was forcing for her sake. She felt compelled to tell him her problem. Lately, the thought of suicide has been running rampant through her mind, and subconsciously, she had a desire to confess her affliction to an understanding ear. She knew in her mind that confiding in a sympathetic person would possibly heal her tortured soul.
“It’s just that I’m so tired of Amy calling me a lesbian, or a virgin. I’ve never been with a woman. Nor have I ever slept with a man.” She put her hand over her mouth and looked away.
A moment passed, then she lowered her hand to her chin. “When I was thirteen years old, I was…almost raped…by the father of a little girl I baby sat. I never told anybody. It was ugly! He hurt me! He almost took the most precious thing I owned, and the bastard gave me a fear of intimacy in return. I hated all men for a long, long time. Now, perhaps because I’m older, it’s just that…I’m so confused. I have all these mixed emotions.”
* * * *
Did he hear her correctly? She could not be intimate, either? His heart skipped a beat. Although his mind was racing, he kept a poker face, “Trust me Amber, I know how cruel life can be. I promise to keep your secret. Believe me.”
“Somehow, I knew you would understand, Jack. But, I also hope you won’t look at me like I’m a freak, or less of a woman. What really tears me apart and breaks my heart is that I really like you. Like I’ve already said though, our relationship could never be anything more than platonic. I know a day will come when you’ll want more than that from me, and I will not…be able to be there for you.”
Their overly bubbly waitress returned with their seafood dishes. “Lobster Bisque for the lady, and the Captain’s Platter for you, Captain.” The waitress said cheerfully while placing their scrumptious looking meals on the table, then she asked, “Can I get you anything else?”
“Yes you may,” Trotter said, reaching across the table and picking up Amber’s almost full glass of diet cola. He then handed it and his iced tea to the waitress. “What wine do you recommend with seafood?”
“I would suggest the Chardonnay to accent the lobster,” she quickly answered with no hesitation, placing their glasses on her tray.
“Excellent choice! Bring us a chilled bottle of your finest Chardonnay, and two glasses, please,” Trotter politely requested.
“Yes, sir, Captain. Coming right up.” She flashed her smile and left.
Amber looked at Trotter, astonished. “I thought you said you weren’t a drinker.”
“I’m not. Unless there’s reason to celebrate,” Trotter replied with a devilish grin on his face.
“What’s there to celebrate?” Amber asked suspiciously. “I just told you I’m damaged goods.” Trotter reached across the table, and once again, he clasped her tiny hands in his huge paws. “Us. We are celebrating us. And the beginning of our…ironically…innocent…relationship!”
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