Before she was added to the cast for Love & Hip Hop’s third season, Jen The Pen was first asked to be a part of hip hop media reality show, The Gossip Game. In a recent interview with our very own Emily Exton, the reality star gave her thoughts on the VH1 landscape, women in hip hop media, and her dreams for the future.
VH1: Have you seen the trailer videos for The Gossip Game?
Jen The Pen: Yes!
VH1: We were thinking you might have some thoughts on that.
Jen The Pen: They asked me to be on The Gossip Game!
Jen The Pen: Yea, before Love & Hip Hop. They asked me originally I was supposed to be on The Gossip Game. I had went for a bunch of interviews with the executives at VH1, [and] I ended up choosing Love & Hip Hop because that’s where my life was at the time when we started the filming process. My past is in gossip, it’s in radio but where I was when we started filming was, I was coming off of just having a baby, I’m with this rapper I don’t want to have to make anything up, I want to really be about where my life is right now. Where my life was – struggling trying to get back to work, balancing this life of Cons’ rap life, our personal issues – that made sense for Love & Hip Hop. I am excited to watch The Gossip Game. I had done some work with Angela Yee and Kim Osorio in the past. I’m big fans of them both; I respect them so much they’re my peers. I’m excited to watch someone else’s drama for a little while instead of my own.
VH1: What are you excited about the show exploring? I guess a main thing is obviously women in the industry, in hip hop and media.
Jen The Pen: Yeah, I think the world needs to see that. Everybody always wants to see the behind the scenes, like what it takes to be in whatever position it is to be in the entertainment industry. It’s definitely a good inside look just for girls and young people that are trying to get into, the bloggesphere world or into radio or into journalism. I think it’s going to be a good insight and there sure will be drama. When you put a bunch of women together there’s always drama.
VH1: In your experience has it been more difficult to work among women in that industry or with men?
Jen The Pen: I don’t think I’ve had a difficult time working with women or men. It’s really just about who you know, that’s the most important. Whether you know women in high places or whether you know men in high places, it’s really about who you know and getting the world to know you.
VH1: What’s the best way to go about that?
Jen The Pen: Working hard of course. Trying to link up with the right people and when you’re at events making sure you’re working the room and meeting people all the time. If you need someone today, make sure in a week from now you follow up with them. You want people to remember you, and if you have to stalk their lives for you to remember them they’re going to respect that. If you just meet someone one day and then you go missing they go “oh, they’re not trying to win out here.” When you stalk people and you make yourself relevant, people see that she’s a hard worker and she’s trying to make a name for herself out here. I think that’s important.
VH1: It means something to her…
Jen The Pen: Yeah, it means something. She wants to be someone.
VH1: Do you have a memorable story or project from you radio days that kind of like change the game for you when you were working?
Jen The Pen: Everything changed for me in radio when I got the job at Sirius with Whoo Kid. I had a found out through my manager that they were looking for a new gossip girl and they were supposed to be interviewing a bunch of different girls and letting the audience decide. I went in there I speared my gossip and I never left. Whoo Kid gave me such a big opportunity and such a big chance to really be Jen the Pen and get the Jen the Pen name out there and let the world know I knew what I was doing in this gossip thing. From there Power 92 in Chicago had gotten wind of me, then that took off and I was doing radio for a big market in Chicago. Just being able to have that opportunity with Whoo Kid – that one opportunity – opened so many doors for me.
VH1: What do you like more radio or being on TV?
Jen The Pen: I love being in front of a microphone. I can always talk, I’m good at talking. I love talking, so I love radio but I love TV. A dream job for me, VH1 please be listening! My executives over at VH1, the gods there, please listen: my dream job would be hosting a television show. How Jenny McCarthy has her show now, I think that’s the best of both worlds because you get to talk and you get to be on TV. [Being a television host is now where my eyes are set, that is my dream job.
Tune in to The Gossip Game on Mondays at 9:30p ET/PT on VH1!