Hello everyone! Today I’m one of the stops for Jade Kerrion’s Perfection Unleashed blog tour. Perfection Unleashed is a fantastic science fiction/thriller novel that’s the beginning of a series.
Check out the interview I conducted with Jade Kerrion and be sure to enter the giveaway at the end of this post. Two winners will win a $25 Amazon gift card! Pretty awesome, right?
Hello and welcome, Jade! I had the pleasure of reading through your novel, Perfection Unleashed. Though I am not a science fiction fan, your novel felt more like a thriller than a typical science fiction novel and really gripped me. With all the talk of genetics and what-ifs, did your biology background help when it came to writing the science aspect?
My Biology undergraduate degree was so long ago that I had to go back to Google and Wikipedia to refresh my memory, but certainly my interest in, and understanding of, Biology was a key factor in the writing of Perfection Unleashed.
Reading through your novel, I realized that your mutants have abilities that are a bit more realistic. Is there a reason why you didn’t take your mutants to X-Men level of power?
I wanted to keep it real (which sounds odd, I know, for speculative fiction.) Fact is, obvious mutations are harder to perpetuate. A human born with fins and gills, or wings, would be shunned for a demon (or an angel), but either way, it’s harder to remain unnoticed. Subtle mutations (like telepathy and empathy) are more likely to stay undercover, and therefore, more likely to perpetuate into the next generation. When humans mutate (and we likely will eventually), I’m convinced that we’ll see psychic level mutations before we see other flashier mutations, like the ability to control the weather, fly, or manipulate magnetism. Perfection Unleashed captures the early days of the Genetic Revolution, when mutations are just becoming common, but are not flashy yet.
Whether people realize it or not, redheads are technically “mutants.” Do you think a day will ever arrive when the genetic code in the human species gives some people special powers over others?
Don’t you already know some people with “special powers”? My mother was intuitive and so attuned to the unseen that she could pass for a psychic if she tried. Unfortunately, most of her powers didn’t pass down to me. My husband, I swear, is an empath. I can be on an absolute tirade, ready to rip heads and arms off, and then he’ll walk into the room without saying anything, and my blood pressure immediately settles down. The flip side is when he’s in a sulky mood, the whole house falls apart. The explanations, I don’t think, are exotic. The heart is fundamentally an electrical organ, which means that it is subject to electrical pulses from other electrical organs (including other people.) Some people have a wider sphere of influence than others (i.e., a wider electrical field, perhaps due to a bigger heart?) I think it’s entirely plausible for some people to have a greater impact on others because of their genes. We already see the hints of that around us today. Oh, and my younger son’s mutant power is disrupting the wi-fi internet connection every time he stands in front of the router. It seems funny, I know, but in this house, we’re no longer amused.
I vaguely remember Dolly, the first sheep ever to be cloned. Do you think humans will ever cross that line and eventually try to clone humans?
Science, I think, is fully capable of doing it. I don’t think our comfort level with the idea of cloned humans has caught up just yet. In some countries, it may never catch up. As an example, I see cloned humans more likely to happen in a place like Singapore than in the US, not because of the quality of science but because of the mental attitude and political/social framework in that country/culture. A smaller, autocratic, technologically ambitious country like Singapore will likely have greater political will to pull off human cloning than a large, highly opinionated, and politically diverse country like the US.
I find Mu Xin to be an interesting character. She’s supposed to be the clone to Fu Hao, a 1200 BC military general and high priestess. I wasn’t aware of any female generals in China (does Mulan count?) What made you decide to choose her as a character?
I like women who defy the expectations of their times and cultures and rise to be something more. Fu Hao was one such person. There were several reasons for choosing Fu Hao as Mu Xin’s donor. First, of course, was her amazing background and history. Next, she was a real person, and grounding fiction in reality is a powerful tool for creating believability. Finally, her tomb was actually found, making it somewhat (however remotely) possible that DNA could have been recovered, enough to create Mu Xin.
You mentioned once that Danyael, the main character, has been in your head for quite some time. Care to share with us what his first incarnation was?
Danyael was the first character I created for a Play-By-E-mail (PBEM) RPG called Imperial Secrets. In that incarnation, he was an assassin and the long-lost son of a king. He was eventually restored to his family and his birthright as heir to the throne. Along the way, he was blood-bonded into a life gestalt with his lover, Clarissa Iconnue, and learned how to step through shadows. All in all, it was a wild and crazy ride, and over the years, he’s become something of a beautiful and evil muse. He just won’t let go.
Zara Itani compliments your team of in vitro, clone, mutant, and genetic creation perfectly. As the completely natural human in your cast of main characters, was it hard to come up with someone as strong and resourceful as her without having her be overshadowed by the others?
No, it wasn’t hard coming up with a character like Zara. She is the cold dash of common sense and a tribute to humanity in a novel powered by alpha mutants. I think she holds her own well, and when mutant powers fail, she’ll still have her eyes, her ears, and her wits about her. In many ways, she’s the most capable of the bunch because she’s not reliant on one skill or one power. I adore Zara. She’s fun to write.
Did you have any inspirations while writing Perfection Unleashed? If so, what were they?
I’m inspired by pictures. In Perfection Unleashed, the picture is that of a man, walking alone, back home to a woman who is waiting for him, a woman he no longer remembers. The loneliness and poignancy of the picture carried the novel from beginning to end.
You mentioned that you got your start with fanfiction. Do you think you would have pursued a career/hobby in writing regardless of fanfiction?
Oh yes, I started writing long before I got into fan fiction. My Guild Wars fan fiction was just the most recent major writing event that convinced me that I could probably write for more people than just myself without being a total embarrassment. My husband however, was the one who convinced me to take my writing all the way into being published. He’s supported me through the entire journey and put up with far too many late nights of desk lamps blazing at my little desk in our bedroom.
Being an indie author, I know it’s hard to balance so many things on top of writing and marketing. So when you’re not doing writing-related things, what do you do?
You mean there’s a life outside of writing-related things? *chuckle* Well, my husband and I homeschool our two sons. My husband is the primary care-provider, but I’ll land a hand as well, teaching them how to play the piano, etc. I also work full-time to keep a roof over our heads and food on the table. I estimate I spend as much time on writing-related things (including marketing) as I do on my full-time job, which means 80+ hour workweeks, but I’m having too much fun doing both to stop. (Yes, I actually do love my full-time job, which helps a great deal in keeping me content with my crazy life.)
It’s been great having you here! Thanks so much for stopping by.
Thank you, Sheenah, for hosting me. It’s been a pleasure sharing some thoughts of Perfection Unleashed with your readers and fans. If you have any questions, post a comment. I’d love to chat.
Jade Kerrion unites cutting-edge science and bioethics with fast-paced action in her novel, Perfection Unleashed. Drawing rave reviews for its originality and vision, and lauded as “a breakout piece of science fiction,” Perfection Unleashed is a Royal Palm Literary Award 2011 winner, a Next Generation Indie Book Award 2012 finalist, and a Hollywood Book Festival Award finalist. Get your copy at Amazon.com.
What would you do if you came face-to-face with perfection, and it looked just like you? Two men, one face. One man seeks to embrace destiny, the other to escape it.
Danyael Sabre spent sixteen years clawing out of the ruins of his childhood and finally has everything he wanted—a career, a home, and a trusted friend. To hold on to them, he keeps his head down and plays by the rules. An alpha empath, he is powerful in a world transformed by the Genetic Revolution, yet his experience has taught him to avoid attention.
When the perfect human being, Galahad, escapes from Pioneer Laboratories, the illusory peace between humans and their derivatives—the in vitros, clones, and mutants—collapses into social upheaval. The abominations, deformed and distorted mirrors of humanity, created unintentionally in Pioneer Lab’s search for perfection, descend upon Washington D.C. The first era of the Genetic Revolution was peaceful. The second is headed for open war.
Although the genetic future of the human race pivots on Galahad, Danyael does not feel compelled to get involved and risk his cover of anonymity, until he finds out that the perfect human being looks just like him.