Str8 Talk: An Interview With Iris Perkins

cocktailmolly

To get started can you tell the readers when did you become interested in writing? What was it that inspired you?

Iris Perkins

Lol. What got me interested in writing? Wow, it started as just something to do. Just documenting my day to day. Hmmmm, I went and bought a “grab bag” from a thrift store for $3 and it contained pens, pencils, markers and a journal. I was sitting in a parking lot and saw a “No loitering No Trespassing” Sign and it started me writing again. There was an eighteen year hiatus. I was in an abusive relationship and he burned my previous writings.

cocktailmolly

Wow. But the great thing was that writing was therapeutic for you, helping you transition into the new and better you. Before the burnings of your work, when was the first time you can recall a developing passion for writing? Also, I wanted to add more on to the first question and that is what writer inspired you to start writing back in the day? And what writer keeps u on ur toes now?

Iris Perkins

Honestly, I don’t recall if it was a passion for it, it was just that things happened and I had no one to talk to so I wrote “talk to myself” per se. I liked keeping to myself.  Honestly, no one inspired me to write. It was something to do.  There are so many writers that are keeping me on my toes now. Octavia Butler (R.I.P.), James Gordon, Ringo, and a host of other poets.

cocktailmolly

You were kind of like Alice Walker, huh? I heard u dropping some gems on the audience at the Black Satin Radio Event a couple months back. If I recall u have written a total of five books, right? Can u tell ppl about them and where they can get copies of your work?

Iris Perkins

Yes, something like Alice Walker. She is amazing. Thank you for that compliment. I have one novel out (Quindecennial Romance), one short story out and I am working on 6 novels simultaneously.  They are available through me or on Amazon.

cocktailmolly

With all the talk about declining marriage numbers, ppl speaking of love as if it is dead. It seems as if all hope for the idea of love has dissipated. What is your take on the subject and how does love come into play into your poetry?

Iris Perkins

Love is not dead. Marriages, in my opinion do not fail because of love lost, they fail because of communication. Love, to me, is like energy…it cannot be destroyed. It changes form and people misuse it often. I am not a love poet and I don’t often write about it. Most times I choose not to write about matters of the heart.

cocktailmolly

As a black female writer, do u feel on some level a responsibility to create positive depictions of African American women in your work? How do you go about doing that? Also, I was speaking with someone the other day about the issue with colorism within the African American society and how it has effected the actions and progress of the lot. My question is in your writings do you try to give positive descriptions of light and dark skinned blacks, especially women seeing as how some brothas, in particular, have allowed it to direct their actions in how they select & treat their women and children?

Iris Perkins

In my writing, novel wise, I only use colors to describe the characters. I don’t place any emphasis on one being better than the other. In my poetry, I have often raised the question about Team Red-bone vs Team Dark-skin or Team Natural vs Team Relaxed vs Team Weave. It amazes me how we find petty things to keep us apart instead of working together to better us all. We should be discussing wages and education not skin color, hair styles and new Jordan’s. I know that the color of one’s skin does play a role in how we see people. It is hard to tell people that it doesn’t happen when we see it every day. I am not sure how to stop it; however, I know it is a mindset that was “handed” down from our ancestors because we are taught to discriminate.

cocktailmolly

absolutely. speaking of ur poetry. Can u explain your mission as a poet/writer? Is it to educate, empower, inspire, enjoy life & simplicity … what is it that you would like for the audience to take away from your work when they read one of your stories, novels, or poems?

Iris Perkins

Oooooooooo… Ok…ummm, ahem..cough..cough…ahem… It depends on the poem. Lol

cocktailmolly

Okay … Before I let u go. I know u said that u were working on six novels currently? How close are u to finishing? And can u give us an idea on the plot(s) of the one u plan on pushing out first?

Iris Perkins

From my conscious pieces, I try to get the reader to learn something or see a different point of view. For my fun pieces, I try to get the reader to laugh or see the lighter side of life. For my emotional pieces, I am just writing about myself providing insight I have learned over my years on this Earth. For my erotic pieces, I do my best to make one moist or erect and make them feel some type of way about my words to want to act on them, but respobsibly. Responsibly* I am in the middle of 3 and just beginning the others…so like 25K words on three and like 8K words on the others. I am writing one fantasy novel, one murder mystery, 3 non-fiction, and one that is a little play on my life. Honestly, I don’t know which will come first. I am working in 4 projects that I want to get out for the summer. 1 Erotic, 1 conscious, 1 emotional, and 1 fun.

cocktailmolly

So u r interested in writing in many genres? That’s great. Many authors tend to specialize, but would like to be more diverse while with u it seems to be a natural flow. So what is next for Iris Perkins? Any events, new works, that people should know about so they can support you?

Iris Perkins

I just like to write. Lol. It is a way of pushing myself to see if I can do it. It is selfish, I know,however, that is my drive. Next for me? Whew, well, I am working on a calendar. Sexy, sensual and a little poetry…gotta figure out what to call it. It will be all me. To support me or find me I am under my real name just about any where, Iris Perkins.

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