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AP: Do you feel like the blogs and the celebrity Web sites play up your relationship with Justin Bieber?
Gomez: I think they do kind of blow it up in a way and I do think they want to have something to talk about, so that's the easy thing to do. ... I've known him for a really long time and we enjoy each other's company every now and then. But I'm definitely single and enjoying being that.
AP: What have you learned from Taylor Swift when it comes to making music?
Gomez: I think Taylor has been a really good inspiration in my life in general, not just the music side, just who she is. Taylor's been one of the strongest people I've ever known and she's been through a lot. ... Honestly I think if anything I aspire to be her in her personal life and how she handles herself publicly.
AP: You gave a shout-out to your Bible study crew in your album "thank yous." Is that an important part of your life?
Gomez: I think it's been important for me to kind of keep all of that part of me private just because I know it's such a sensitive subject for everyone and what I believe is maybe not necessarily what you believe and what everyone else believes. It is very important for me to acknowledge it because I'm not ashamed of it, but at the same time I know that people get kind of sensitive with it, so that was really for them.
AP: What it's like being a big sister? (Gomez's mother gave birth to a daughter last month.)
Gomez: It's crazy. There's a 21-year age gap, which is OK, but it's actually really amazing because we won't be fighting over boys or clothes, so I'll be able to be a cool aunt in a way. But I'm absolutely obsessed.
Follow Mesfin Fekadu on Twitter: twitter.com/MusicMesfin