An Interview with Fitness and Cover Model Zack Salaun
TRC: Hi Zach and welcome to The Reading Cafe. We would like to start with some background information. Would you please tell us something about yourself?
Zack: Well, I grew up in Northern California and later moved to Southern Cali where I have stayed since I was 18. I have always loved being active and hated being told what to do. I have always questioned the commonly accepted and asked “why” and that attitude along with a love for life has led me to where I am today.
TRC: What were your dreams and aspirations growing up?
Zack: I always wanted to be a professional motocross racer. My first love was always dirt bikes.
TRC: What first sparked your interest in modeling? Is there a defining moment where you knew that modeling was something you were interested in pursuing?
Zack: Modeling was never my interest, but the idea of waking up to a life I loved was always my goal. I just want to be excited to wake up every day and do whatever it is I have to do. Happiness is all about loving your push. Modeling was simply the first thing that allowed me to get paid to be fit, travel and meet new people.
TRC: Have you ever had a photo shoot that went completely wrong?
Zack: Not really. I am pretty selective when choosing who I shoot with so I generally have chemistry, or if they are new, I make the chemistry 🙂 I love people.
TRC: Nudity in modeling or acting can be controversial. Some pictures can cross the line between sexuality to pornography. What would you tell young models/actors /body builders just entering the business about nude modeling and photography?
Zack: I don’t think there is anything inherently right or wrong about nudes. There are tasteful ways to do it and trashy ways to do it and there are both benefits and advantages to baring it all. What I would say is that there are consequences to all our actions and with today’s internet, some will choices will never go away. It all comes down to who you want to be and where you want your career to go. Some of the greatest models have done some wild shit that made their career, and there are some other incredibly talented models that did some questionable things that halted their career right where they stood. That being said, I believe anything can be overcome if you work hard enough. Again, it all comes down to who you want to be and how hard you are willing to work?
TRC: The modeling industry exposes you to many people and sometimes it can be very stressful. What do you do when the stress becomes overwhelming?
Zack: Have a meltdown… I joke, but that does happen. I turn to doing the things I love like mountain biking, climbing, surfing, MMA and other things like that. Its also incredibly important to build your circle of friends and loved ones with care. They are your rock and foundation. The modeling and fashion worlds can be strangely caustic, so its important to have people that help ground you.
TRC: At times, there has been a ‘stigma’ surrounding the male model and the romance-cover industry but the popularity of the romance story line has skyrocketed in the last few years especially with the erotic and sensual cover images. What is your opinion about the recent popularity and the very busy industry of the ‘romance cover model’?
Zack: I think its wonderful that this niche is growing. I think it would be even better if it grew large enough to allow the models to make a full time living doing it, which isn’t the case now. As for the genre itself, I believe that if people are entertained and enjoy it, then it belongs in this world.
TRC: Do you believe the cover image plays a deciding factor for many readers in the process of selecting a book or new series to read?
Zack: Absolutely. I can’t speak for the readers, but the genre is based on fantasies. If the cover model happens to fit someone’s ultimate desire the book is simply a way to further bring it to life and experience it on a more intimate level. I am sure there are plenty of cases where readers just love the style of the author, but I would wager that many of those relationships began because a cover caught someone’s eye.
TRC: Do you remember the first romance cover on which you appeared? Do you have a favorite?
Zack: Actually, I can’t 🙁 I’ve been on quite a few over the last few years and I keep myself quite busy with my business. I’m honored and grateful for all of them. The fact that someone wanted my silly face on their work of art is a beautiful thing. I’m still not used to the whole thing. Picking a favorite would be tough. There are so many great ones. Wander and Andrey do an amazing job with the photos and then the cover art happens. I’ve had a few that I love, picking one just isn’t possible.
TRC: Do you know the number of novel covers that your image has appeared?
Zack: oooo…I’m not totally sure but its over 30 at this point.
TRC: What do you do to relax?
Zack: What every guy does…write or read generally (you thought I was going somewhere else with that 😉 Swimming always helps too.
TRC: What three things would you like to accomplish in the next five years?
Zack: The 3 things I will accomplish in the next 5 years:
Bring my business to a 7 figure passive, residual income annually.
Finish the book I am writing
Own 5 investment properties
TRC: What is something that few people know about you?
Zack: I value time far more than money
TRC: Who or what are your inspirations?
Zack: I am inspired by life and living it uncaged. Happiness and beauty begin when we are genuine and to live truly as ourselves we have to be free from the common barriers we allow to hold us back, like money, jobs, fear, and normal…whatever that is. I am inspired by those that have done that before me and those that are willing to risk everything for the chance to live life completely on their own terms.
TRC: What type of music do you listen to? What songs are on your current playlist?
Zack: Oh I listen to a ton of different stuff. Classical, classic rock, alternative rock, instrumental, electronic, dubstep, trance, rap… it really depends on my mood, but the common theme is whether it is saying something worth listening to.
Led Zeppelin, Chevelle, TOOL, Blackmill, Glitchmob, Atmosphere, RHCP, Mac Dre….list goes on
TRC: On what on your currently working?
Zack: I am currently focused on my business. I teach active people how to create passive income so they can do more of what they love. Its my passion and I love waking up to it.
TRC: Would you like to add anything else?
Zack: Only that I am grateful for everyone out there that reads this and supports me. It means the world to me that anyone wants to hear what I have to say. So, Thank you.
Favorite Food: How can you pick one?
Favorite Dessert: I usually eat too much dinner
Favorite Movie: Snatch
Favorite TV Show: Rick and Morty
Last Movie that you saw: Liar Liar
Secret Celebrity Crush: Allan Watts
Dark or Milk Chocolate: Dark
Do you have any pets? Not anymore 🙁
Pet Peeve: Fake people or Being rude
TRC: Thank you Zack for taking the time to answer our questions. Congratulations on all of your success.