Monday, August 30, 2010

Character spotlight with Jackson Taylor

Hello, Jackson. Would you introduce yourself?
Hello. I’m Jackson Taylor from the book Those Who Wait by Lynn Hones. Simone O’Henley is the female protagonist in said book and she talked me into this interview. I don’t like talking about myself, but I’ll do my best. Oh, and you can get the book through, or going directly there using I have no idea what that is, but Lynn asked me to mention it.

What makes you special?
Wow, that’s a hard question to answer. *laughs* Simone told me this might make me uncomfortable and boy, she’s right. I think she talked me into this so she could watch me squirm. *Looks over at Simone, who sits in the corner smiling.* Well, I guess what makes me so special is that I finally got Simone to fall in love with me. *Looks at her and winks.*

Tell me about your most current adventure.
My current adventure is one that I hadn’t planned on. I wasn’t being a stalker or anything, but when I saw Simone sitting on the porch that day. Well, let’s just say, I now believe in love at first sight. *Lights his pipe and takes a puff*

If you could offer your author advice, what would it be?
Write more love scenes. * laughs and looks over at Simone who is cracking up*

Are you happy with the way people perceive you?
What’s important to me, as a southern gentleman, is how I perceive myself. If I live my life with honor and courage, then people will only have one way to see me. *Puffs on his pipe*

Tell us a little bit about your world.
I made a promise years ago to a group of friends. I can’t tell you what that promise was, but…it would have been easier for me to abandon that pledge, to take the easy way out, rather than spend years in lonely isolation. But in the world where I was raised, that’s not even an option. I’d rather be dead, than go back on my word.

Is expressing love difficult for you? Why?
Yes, it is. I can’t express it the way most men do I guess. Simone got mad at me one time. I’m sure she told you she was raised by nuns. I thought a comment she made to me once was a bit, um…well, let’s just say I told her I was surprised a lady would say something like that. She didn’t cotton to that too kindly. She let me know she was a lady and by God, I’d better never insinuate she was anything but. I’m old fashioned. I can’t help it. It’s how I was raised.

If you could pull your author into your world, what do you think would happen to her?
I’ll admit I really like Lynn. She’s a good listener. Simone and her have gotten to be good friends. They talk a lot. Ya know, girl talk. The thing is, Lynn’s a bit more…*shakes his head. * She’s not shy around men. She had her share of boyfriends before she got married and never felt… Well, I think she considers me a bit of a fuddy-duddy. I’m not a believer in kissing on the first date, although I’ll admit with Simone, I couldn’t help it. Here’s how it happened.

While the yellow light of the porch cast a gentle glow, without hesitation he turned toward her. A brisk couple of steps over, he took her face in his forceful hands and kissed her.
His kiss searched or longed for something and created the sensation of a life of its own. She returned the longed-for kiss and her head swam while her legs quivered. An electric current-like force drove all logic and sense of reason from her. His arms went quickly around her waist and he squeezed her tightly. In a rough moment, his lips ran along her chin and down to her neck. He opened his mouth and his tongue tasted her lightly scented skin.
At the front of her throat, he worked his warm mouth and soft tongue to the side and then under her ear. He grabbed her earlobe with his teeth and she heard his breath, which made her heady. Back to her lips, his hand pushed her mouth harder against his.
She gasped in between his hungry bites on her lips and was ready to be swept away. He stopped. His breath came out in short, heavy bursts. Soberly, he looked into her eyes and spoke. “I’m sorry, Simone.” Guilty, as if he’d done something wrong, something bad, he looked ashamed.
But it wasn’t wrong and it wasn’t bad. How could the glorious ecstasy that coursed through her body be bad? Nothing ever felt, so right or…so good. Him and her together. But his look, like an icicle melting in a snowstorm, confused her.
After a long glance, Jackson walked off the porch into the starlit night. Speechless and confused, she watched his back disappear into the grove. He left so abruptly, she felt cheated somehow. One minute they sat and enjoyed each other immensely and the next, she was alone.

Lynn asked me to clear up the fact that she wasn’t in any means a loose woman, if that’s how that came across. Sorry, Lynn, I just meant that you seem the type of gal who enjoyed kissing on the first date.

Share a little bit of the ‘real’ you with our readers. Any Dark secrets?
Simone, quit your gigglin’, darlin’. Seriously though, I think both of us would love to let you in on our dark secret. The real me is…a man who cannot possibly be understood. Not until you truly grasp who I am. It’s not something that the mind can possibly comprehend in a short time.

How many sex partners have you had? How many at one time?
I would never compromise my self-respect or the self-respect of the woman I’m to marry by…by doing anything improper. I was raised by parents who grew up in a different place and time. By God, they instilled those morals into me. *Relights pipe and stretches out his long legs*

What’s the oddest thing you’ve seen or done?
This interview. *Looks over at Simone and growls. *

Tell us what it’s like to spend a day with you.
I’ll be honest. I’m a simple man. A picnic lunch and a day out in the woods with my hound dog, Blue, is the perfect day. Oh, * looks to Simone with a sheepish grin* and spending it with my darlin’.

What’s the one thing you wish you could change about yourself or someone you love?
For the one I love, I wouldn’t change a thing. I love Simone and even time couldn’t keep us apart. As for myself, I’d love to change the fact that I couldn’t save my…*stops and looks down, quiet for several moments* I can’t think of anything at the moment.

How do you deal with stress?
I enjoy reading the classics and of course my pipe.

Tell us about the first time you laid eyes on Simone.
I was walking by the cottage she was staying at. I was used to seeing strangers there because the owners let friends use it. I saw this vision sitting in a rocker. She had long dark hair, and the cutest freckled face and upturned nose I’d ever seen. I think I surprised her, but I just had to say hi that very moment. Her raggy looking mutt, Vinnie, came down first, growling and such, but once my dog, Blue, made an entrance, it was the two of them running and playing that caught her attention. She stood to watch, and when she did, that clinched it. I knew then I was in love.

Finally, is there something you wished we had asked, but didn’t?
Enjoy life’s simple pleasures. Here’s an excerpt:
They sat in a comfortable silence before he cleared his throat and smiled at her. “I can remember years ago watching my parents sit on the front porch of our old home holding hands. It was usually in the evening after all the commotion of the day was at rest. They’d be rocking and talking of the struggles life brings and what would become of each one of us kids, I loved to crawl under the floorboards of that old porch and listen to ‘em going on about the here and there of raisin’ such a big brood.” Jackson laughed. “My brothers and I would give ‘em the hardest time. We’d be raising a ruckus about this or that. Climbing trees, getting stung by bees, chasing the girls with snakes.”
Simone smiled at Jackson. She loved to hear him talk about himself, but even more, she loved the feel of her hand in his.
“When my folks thought they were alone and no one listened, I’d hear them declare their love for each other. It made me feel so…safe and warm. I always hoped I’d be that kind of a parent, but it didn’t work out that way.”
She put her head back and sighed.
Jackson shook his head. “I’m sorry, Simone. Here I am going on and on about my family, my parents and you didn’t have…I mean you…”
Simone saved him. “Jackson, please don’t apologize. I love to hear about your parents. I may have missed out on that, but listening to you, I can imagine it. I guess like a seeing person, explaining the beauty of sight to the blind.” She shrugged resignedly and again laid her head back.
“I’m glad to hear that. Life is so short, Simone. We don’t know what tomorrow holds for us. If we only exist on this earth without feeling…the good and bad, then we aren’t growing. Like we’re standing outside in the pouring rain and not feeling the wet.”

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