Inside the Author’s Mind – Janis Ian

I’ve featured multiple Grammy award-winning singer, songwriter Janis Ian on two previous posts. The first one was to highlight her support for Indies Unite for Joshua, the IndieGoGo campaign for author Maxwell Cynn’s son who is fighting leukemia. The second one listed all the items she donated—an incredible variety of her work. The three gift packages were quickly snatched up by donors.

It’s my great pleasure to welcome Janis back for my author series. Her autobiography, Society’s Child has received rave reviews, and the audio version of it will be coming soon. She is also starting a music tour this month, so please check out her tour dates.

You will love Janis’ answers to my questions. She’s a no-nonsense, quick-witted woman with a wonderful sense of humor, and it’s my privilege to have her on my blog.

Please welcome the gracious, Janis Ian.

* * * *

Buy Society’s Child

Available from Janis’ website or Amazon autobiography coming soon!

* * * *

Inside Janis Ian’s Mind

What is your idea of perfect happiness? Having enough money and time to stay home and write, instead of doing business and touring.

What turns you on creatively? Everything and nothing. Gosh, what a pretentious answer… seriously, though, I’d be hardpressed to know.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse? The concept of dancing as communication.

What quality do you most admire in a man? Honest. Articulate. Sober. Fun-loving. Self-sufficient. Not an idiot.

What quality do you most admire in a woman? Honest. Articulate. Sober. Fun-loving. Self-sufficient. Not an idiot.

What is your greatest regret? Not being able to provide better financially for my mother in her last years.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? My body – I’d be tall, graceful, with fabulous reflexes and muscles that rippled… <LOL>

What is your greatest fear? Not to be true to myself and my work. Not to live up to my work.

Which living person do you most admire? Myself? No, bad answer, sorry! Mmm… I don’t know. I’ve met most of the people I idolized in my youth, and it’s hard to admire just one person out of the many. Politicians are out. Ditto religious figures. Geez. Um. I have no idea, really.

What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? All the ones I really suck at – I’d like to be a ballet dancer, play the flute and saxophone, do daredevil tricks from horseback, tame wild animals with a single word. And all the ones that are impossible – swim with whales in the deepest waters, live among elephants for a while, be an archaeologist and a medical doctor and a mathematician and pure research scientist… oh, and a member of a really great think tank would be good, too.

If you could choose what to come back as, what would it be? One of my dogs.

What do you consider your greatest achievement? Not going under.

What is the trait you most deplore in others? Laziness.

What is your greatest extravagance? Perrier water in bottles instead of club soda or seltzer in cans.

What is one thing you want to do before you die? Find a cure for death.

What is your favorite piece of music? Too many… Off the top of my head, Lhasa de Sela’s “Con Toda Palabra”, and Yvo Pogorelich playing Schumann’s Symphonic Etudes in the Form of Variations, Opus 13 , particularly # 3.

What are some of your favorite curse words? Do people still curse?

What is your motto? I don’t have one. I don’t think…

Janis, my sincere thanks for your generous spirit, and your ability to touch with words. I am so looking forward to reading your book. I encourage everyone to learn more about Janis and her work.

* * * *

Connect with Janis

Connect with Janis on her website and find out more about her concert tour starting in a couple of weeks. She has also recorded an audio version of her autobiography Society’s Child, and continues the work for her charity, The Pearl Foundation.

You can befriend Janis on Facebook and follow her on Twitter.

And because this is one of my favorite songs, I’m reposting “At Seventeen.”

eden 😉


Filed under Author & Artist Interviews

20 responses to “Inside the Author’s Mind – Janis Ian

  1. justinbog

    I loved your interview, Eden. The answers showed a playful and curious mind filled with so much more to share. Great.


  2. Lance

    She seems so young in spirit. I like “not going under” as her answer. That should all be our response.

    Loved this. You got to interview the great Janis Ian.


  3. Fabulous, Eden–she’s brilliant and wonderful and sounds like someone who would be fun to have coffee with 🙂 I love stars who are very down to earth and kind like this… XOX


  4. What a fantastic interview. It is amazing to read more about the person behind the music and everything else. Truly fantastic..


  5. Oh, Eden. You lucky girl! I been in love with Janis for a long time. She has so much talent that if she gave me a pinch she would never miss it, but it would make me a star.

    Great interview. Janis is one of a kind.


  6. Excellent answers, Janis! I’m particularly intrigued by your answer about dancing as a form of communication….


  7. Janis Ian is truly one of our national treasures and her answers to your excellent questions were a delight to read. Exceptional interview, eden! All my best wishes to both of you remarkable women.


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  10. Wow. Janis Ian. Her work was instrumental in me trying my own hand at writing music.

    Wow again. And again.


  11. Society’s Child is a wonderful book! Everyone should read it. Janis is such an inspiration. You’re a lucky girl for getting to interview her 🙂


  12. Thanks everyone! The audiobook is out and has been nominated for a Grammy in Best Spoken Word – my astonishing colleagues in the category are First Lady Michelle Obama, former president Bill Clinton, Rachel Maddow, and Ellen Degeneres…

    Liked by 1 person

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