Photo: © Regine Romain
In this eagerly-awaited collection, Kiini Ibura Salaam continues her exploration of the dark, the sensual, and the mysterious with fiction that disturbs, delights, and dazzles. The five stories and one novella collected in When the World Wounds examine the tumultuous nature of the human condition through such wild imaginings as sensual encounters with deer, escapism… »
Notes from the Trenches
Kiini Ibura Salaam has been writing essays and short stories since 1990. Over the years, she discovered that there’s much more to writing than sitting down and writing. There are a series of complex psychological and logistical demands that artists have to navigate to sustain artmaking on an ongoing basis. Is my work good enough?… »
Notes From the Trenches
After over 20 years as a writer Kiini Ibura Salaam is fascinated by all the backstage psychological wrangling writers go through to sustain their careers. With a regular column on writing, Kiini has written almost 100 mini-essays exploring the nitty, gritty of what it takes to sustain a writing career. Salaam’s “Notes from the Trenches”… »
I went to the Met for the unveiling of Wangechi Mutu’s sculptures, which are now sitting proudly installed in four alcoves across the Met’s façade. These sculptures were created as the inaugural Facade Commission. These newly established project will commission an artist to develop sculptures to be displayed outside of the museum for a year…. »
Life is full of contradictions. Or, the way we view life is full of contradictions. We spend a lot of time labeling and deciding who we are and what we are going to achieve. However, the irony is that we rarely know exactly what those labels mean and what those achievements will require. When you… »
I’m hesitant to write this post because I don’t want to be a dream killer. For anyone who is still waking up full of creative energy and possibility, who skips over to the page or the canvas full of ideas and fascination, thrilled to spend hours playing with your new visions, this post is not… »
1 On deep purple-black nights, when the whole house has pushed itself into slumber, WaLiLa’s energy flits around her room like a moth. It leaps up to do jumping jacks & turns cartwheels, then clings to the ceiling. It bounces off the walls & jiggles its knees impatiently. WaLiLa is a jitterbugging ball of need… »
“the most powerful seductions are executed against the silence of few words” Sometimes, I feel shoulder shrug like a motherless child. cheek rub against shoulder Sometimes, I feel like a motherless child. body slump At twilight, when the earth is settling down for rest, MalKai is turning over inside. The colors of dusk pierce… »
1. Musicians, practicing an age-old tradition, scatter syncopated rhythms across the night sky. Through rapid hand movements and homemade instruments, they pay homage to fierce gods. The music tattoos the sky’s surface with patterns of prayer, patterns that transform themselves into welcome mats for beings in realms the musicians have no knowledge of. One such… »
Race: A discussion in 10 parts plus a few moments of unsubstantiated theory and one inarguable fact…
1. Race is bullshit. A meaningless line drawn in sand by men bent on world domination and oppression. It was introduced as a fixed notion, an unchangeable, undeniable fact of world order. Yet from the moment of race’s conception, the amazing diversity of body types, cultures, and traditions on the African continent alone complicated race’s… »
It happens in silence. A man—young, tall, hooded—sits in a waiting room. All the chairs are taken except the one diagonally across from him. A woman comes in carrying a child. She sits in the only seat available and busies herself removing the child’s coat and hat. The man’s eyes cut to the corner checking… »
When I first returned home from studying abroad, everyone wanted to know, “How was the Dominican Republic?” I was reluctant to respond. Masking the truth behind “fine’s” and “good’s,” I skirted my real feelings. “Did you like it?” is such a loaded question that it can’t be answered with a simple “yes” or “no.” For… »
I mentioned “Achieving With Ease” in the podcast. Here’s the blog post I wrote when I was wrestling with writing and working to find a way for continue to work under difficult circumstances. You can read it here.
Be well. Be love[d].
A colleague recently listened to one of the podcasts and reminded me of the Word of the Week! As I am freeing up some energy after completing my second short story collection (yay, When the World Wounds will be out in the world in October!), I decided to dive back into podcast land. Here’s a new episode. The word is “terrestrial.” Listen in to hear how terrestrial connects to writing.
The story I read from in the podcast—Of Wings, Nectar, & Ancestors—was the very first speculative fiction story of my career. It was written 20 years ago!!! (It can be read here.)