Kim Zolciak started "The Real Housewives of Atlanta" with a great friend, a doting fiancé and a budding singing career. Now, just two weeks before the show's finale, we're about to see just how much her life has changed. Here she talks to ESSENCE.com about the tension between her and the other housewives, the latest offer she's received and what's really going on between her and Big Poppa.
ESSENCE.COM: How is the music career going?
KIM ZOLCIAK: My first song, "Tight Rope," will be out the first week in January, but I'm not sure when the album will be coming out. [Dallas Austin] wrote and produced it. He originally sent me three but I fell in love with the beat and lyrics. The song is about walking a tight rope with somebody. It [speaks] to my personal life and my relationship and just life in general. It definitely applies to my life, but after seeing that footage on the show where it looks like I can't sing! I guess it makes for good television but it looked awful to me. People will just have to wait for my album to see the deal.
ESSENCE.COM: Speaking of your relationship, there are tons of rumors out there that your fiancé, otherwise known as Big Poppa, is married. Care to clarify?
ZOLCIAK: He is legally married. He has been going through a divorce for years. I've seen all these crazy names of who he is on the Internet, like Quincy Jones, Ted Turner, and even Dallas. He's like Sheree, who has been trying to get a divorce for years, but she's dating so it's that kind of thing.
ESSENCE.COM: Are you guys still going strong?
ZOLCIAK: No, it's officially over. I called off my engagement and I'm officially single. People have speculated that it's this Lee guy (Lee Najjar) to Quincy Jones to David Foster to Dallas Austin. It's just unbelievable. Big Poppa has been my best friend for three years and I think he's a great person but I need to go find Kim and what makes Kim happy and chase my dreams. I want someone who is supportive of me and my dreams and not add tension to my life. I want to focus on my children, finish my album and not worry about what makes everyone else happy.
ESSENCE.COM: What projects do you have coming up after the show?
ZOLCIAK: I'm in talks to be on the cover of Playboy and possibly on the cover of Maxim. I'm very excited. A lot of people were like I wish you would do Playboy so I'm working on that. I didn't want to be just a centerfold girl. I wanted to be the cover!
ESSENCE.COM: It seems like you and NeNe may never be friends again. Have things gotten better between you two?
ZOLCIAK: No. We are definitely not friends. You know she really hurt my feelings singing that song about me in the limo. Although it is fun and entertaining, it was still at my expense. Lisa was the one who told me that NeNe has sang that song about me. Sheree had told me but Sheree wasn't there in the car. I found out about NeNe singing about me about a month after we started filming so I knew even before I started becoming friends with Sheree. People are looking at this footage and thinking I turned my back on NeNe and became best friends with Sheree. Lisa is the one who told me the whole thing. I was just devastated. I was loyal to NeNe and a good friend. Plus, Lisa is running around saying she didn't say anything but that's how I found out. DeShawn is not into gossip. She's sweet and I really like her. She's just this even-keeled person. Lisa is still trying to deny that she told me, but I have phone records that prove that I spoke to her. She's been saying, oh, I never talked to you that day and I was like, damn, bitch, here's the phone record. This whole deal is nothing but drama.
ESSENCE.COM: So we're guessing there's no way you and NeNe can get past this.
ZOLCIAK: NeNe is funny, entertaining, and was a good friend but watching the footage again reopened old wounds. She has to understand that I'm really sensitive, and whether it was in good fun or not, it still bothered me. The biggest problem between NeNe and me is a lack of communication and the fact that everyone is running their mouth.
ESSENCE.COM: So what's up between you and Lisa? Did you call her a "crack whore"?
ZOLCIAK: Everything was blown out of proportion. There are so many rumors and just gossip out there. I thought this was over with but as far as I am concerned, Lisa is a great girl. I did read Lisa's story on ESSENCE.com and I think at the end of the day, I could certainly run my own mouth but I choose to take the high road. I read a Google alert out loud and there were tons of stuff written about all of us, not just Lisa. I was reading a blog. I would never speak that way of anybody especially one of my costars. I'm a mother and I would never speak that way. Whoever relayed the message to Lisa didn't give her the whole story. It was no big deal. I was reading it verbatim in the blog thinking, This is crazy. It wasn't directed to anyone else.
ESSENCE.COM: Are you still close friends with Sheree?
ZOLCIAK: We're very close. She's easy to get along with and our kids get along great. I think her image on the show and the way she's portrayed is totally inaccurate. Is she totally confident? Yes. Does she like to shop? Absolutely. But I think she comes off as a diva more than she actually is.
ESSENCE.COM: You once said that you see yourself as a Black girl in a White girl's body. What makes you feel like you identify with Black women?
ZOLCIAK: I had entirely too much wine that day in my interview. I just don't see color and I never have because it doesn't matter to me. People always say, "You sure your dad's not Black?"- because I got a pretty round booty. Other than that, 50 percent of my girlfriends are Black. It's not that I can relate to one more than the other. That's just my life and that's who I am surrounded by mostly and it works for me.