FEATURE: Karrine Steffans, Head of the Class
Karrine Steffans, the former video vixen best known for her rap relations and latest memoirs, is releasing her highly anticipated third book: The Vixen Manual: How To Find, Seduce & Keep The Man You Want. Most may find it surprising that this best-selling author is giving advice on how to keep a man, but her past is exactly what makes her qualified to do so.
Don't expect another autobiography with dirt on your favorite rapper. That’s in the past. The manual is a man’s dream. Karrine, being the gentleman’s lady she is, gives women the inside scoop on how to get a man, and how to keep him running back for more. With chapters titled, “Dating for Love or Money,” “Being One of The Boys,” “Encouraging His Manhood,” and “If All Men Are Dogs...(Then All Women Are Bitches)," Steffans is putting her vast experience to use. The manual isn’t only sex-filled and focused on men, it also suggests that women have to be at their best to get the best man. XXLMag.com caught up with Steffans to discuss her having a man's mentality, women being able to do more than men and Lil Wayne being her case study.
XXLMag.com: You have an interesting relationship history. What made you want to write the ultimate guide to finding, seducing, and keeping the man you want?
Karrine Steffans: The Vixen Manual started in 2004. For about five years, I’ve been writing it. Something that always fascinated me was the psychology and the psychology differences between men and women and how we relate to one another. So for about five years I’ve learned so much in talking to other women and older women especially. This is the first book that’s organically mine and not part of the machine.
XXL: Now I read the book myself and I saw that you say your strays from the norm qualify you to give this advice. Do you think it will be well-received or blown out of context?
Karrine Steffans: Both. Yea, I mean any good writer is going to be well-received and is going to not be well-received that’s how you know you’re a great writer. If there’s no debate, then I haven’t done my job. So I’m looking forward to debate and I’m looking forward to who may not take it so well. I love that and it creates and it sparks debate which most authors never get a chance to do in their careers and I do with every book.
XXL: So how do you feel about men reading this book?
Karrine Steffans: I think men should read the book. It’s geared toward women, but I feel that so many things in there men will agree with because it’s written by a woman, but it’s not written from a feminist point of view per se. You know, there’s a lot of masculine views in that book and a lot of old folks traditional things I know men wish would come back to relationships and so I think it’s important for them to read it and pass it on to their women.
XXL: The illustrations caught me off guard even though I knew they would be in there. What made you put those in there?
Karrine Steffans: I was inspired by The Joy Of Sex. I felt like that was the only book that had been done and reviewed so widely in the last 40 years. There had been nothing like that for my generation so I called my publisher and said I want to do this, and have this in the center of the book and it worked. I love it.
XXL: I see that a lot of your titles are interesting and catchy, like “If All Men Are Dogs…(Then All Women Are Bitches).” How’d you come up with those titles?
Karrine Steffans: Because I’m super smart. [laughs] And I’m very witty. I don’t know how I come up with those things, that’s what being a writer is about. Everyone has there own thing. It’s almost impossible to explain to you how you come up with stuff. It’s very real things that I say in my own life. You know if all men are dogs, then why aren’t all women bitches? Of course. The point of that title is that you can’t generalize. And so those are things that occur to me naturally that may not occur to other people. I think very differently of course, write very differently.
XXL: You have a very strong point of view and just from reading it, you’ve been around men a lot, has that kind of given you a man’s mindset?
Karrine Steffans: I’ve always had a man’s mindset and that’s why I mostly have men friends and that’s why I’ve been around so many men. I’ve always been a tomboy. And any man that knows me will tell you I’m not a girly girl. So that’s something too that I wanted to be able to express, that this is a woman writing this book, but it’s not necessarily feminist views on things. I have a very traditional way I think. I don’t think that we’re equal to men. I don’t think that we should be equal to men. Because I think that if taken a few steps backwards, we’re actually more equipped and we have a larger capacity than men do for more things. And so why would you want to be like a man, when men actually need you to complete them? That’s not making sense to me.
XXL: I know this is your latest book, but are you doing anything after this?
Karrine Steffans: Of course. There will be no more autobiographies. My second manual is being finished in two weeks.
XXL: What will the second and third manuals be about?
Karrine Steffans: Well the one that we’re writing now, the second manual, is Erotic Fantasies for the Advanced and Adventurous Couple. And what that does is that it takes the “Sex” chapter of the first The Vixen Manual, and it expounds on that specifically and primarily for couples who are married and may be bored and need ideas to spice up their love lives. The third manual I am working on is, How To Attract Wealthy and Powerful Men. It has always been socially acceptable for women to marry upward in society, but in order for a woman to marry upward she’s going to have to know a lot of things. So that’s a really intense manual that will probably take me another two years to finish.
XXL: In our October 2008 issue featuring Lil Wayne on the cover. We had an excerpt from the “W” chapter, which you recently added to The Vixen Diaries. What made you want to release that chapter fully?
Karrine Steffans: It was a relationship that I don’t think we understood and I wanted to kind of put to bed what people thought was happening in that relationship. It was so complicated—I wanted to show that there was a lot of pain involved in that relationship. I thought a lot about who I was with and being around someone who is so talented and who is so great in his own way, it fascinated me. Cause he had always been—though he was my friend, and though he was my confidant for a while and we were very close at some point, he was always to me— a case study. Like I always studied him and what made him tick. I kind of wanted to show the progression of that relationship, you know, how it started, the kind of things that went on in between, the kind of things that were said. This is how it ended, and why it ended. It was important for me to show that.
XXL: Have you and Wayne spoken since the fallout you mention in The Vixen Diaries?
Karrine Steffans: No. No, that was it.
XXL: Do you have any thoughts on Lauren London and Nivea both being pregnant with Wayne's babies at the same time?
Karrine Steffans: I don’t have any thoughts on other people’s vaginas and what they do with them. I don’t have any thoughts on someone else’s child and if they’re pregnant. I don’t have any thoughts on anybody else’s anything. I just, I don’t think about other people’s wombs like that. I don’t care. [laughs] I have my own womb to think about. Thank you! So I don’t have any thoughts. Good luck to everybody.—Kamaria Gboro