Answer: The type of wood used for the spindle and hearth board is crucial to making an ember. This is an often overlooked fact in many descriptions of making fire by friction.
What you are trying to do is create a very fine wood dust and then heat it to between 371-426°C (700-800°F). When that occurs, the wood dust starts to glow and it forms an ember much like the tip of a lit cigarette. That glowing ember can then be coaxed into a flame by adding it to a bundle of very dry tinder and blowing.