Kiini
Ibura
Salaam


Kiini Ibura Salaam is a writer, painter, and traveler from New Orleans, Louisiana. The middle child of five, she grew up in a hardscrabble neighborhood with oak and fig trees, locusts and mosquitoes, cousins and neighbors. Kiini's work delves into spheres of human liberation, human connection, and evolution. She employs speculative fiction, erotica, and creative nonfiction to take readers through mind-bending journeys into the transcendent, the sensual, the mystical, and the fantastic.

More

Photo: © Regine Romain

On the Push to Produce Work

Notes From the Trenches

Salaam’s “Notes from the Trenches” series explores the nitty, gritty of what it takes to sustain a writing career, taking an inside look at everything from the psychology of being a writer to the logistics of sustaining a writing practice to the business of writing. In this volume–On the Push to Produce Work–Salaam dissects the barriers to producing work–whether they be… »


Ancient, Ancient

short fiction (paperback)

Winner of the 2012 James Tiptree, Jr. Award Ancient, Ancient collects the short fiction by Kiini Ibura Salaam, of which acclaimed author and critic Nalo Hopkinson writes, “Salaam treats words like the seductive weapons they are. She wields them to weave fierce, gorgeous stories that stroke your sensibilities, challenge your preconceptions, and leave you breathless with their beauty.” Indeed, Ms. Salaam’s… »


The Single Woman’s Manifesto

An affirmative look at approaching singlehood from a spiritual perspective, this small-format affirmation/meditation book offers a series of fun and fun principles designed to celebrate you and your life, no matter what relationships state you happen to be in…. »


About

Kiini
Ibura
Salaam


Growing up with creative parents who charted an independent cultural and intellectual path, Kiini’s childhood was rich with art, music, and books. As a student, she naturally gravitated toward reading and writing, and wrote her first professional story as a first-year student at Spelman College. After being paid $100 for the publication of that story, her identity as a writer was buoyed and she proclaimed herself a “serious” author.

Kiini’s work encompasses speculative fiction, erotica, creative nonfiction, and poetry. Her writing is rooted in eroticism, speculative events and worlds, and women’s perspectives. Preferring to operate outside of the separation of genres, she has published speculative fiction in erotic anthologies and erotic works in speculative fiction anthologies. Her speculative fiction has been included in such publications as: Dark Matter, Mojo: Conjure Stories, Dark Eros, FEMSPEC, Ideomancer.com, infinitematrix.com and PodCastle.org. One of her earlier (and most distinctive) stories “Of Wings, Nectar, and Ancestors” was translated into Polish and her collection Ancient, Ancient was co-winner of the 2012 James Tiptree, Jr. Award.

Kiini’s creative nonfiction speaks to her two passions: the freedom of women and the freedom of the creative spirit. In essays about date rape, sexual harassment, and the power of the word no, Kiini explores the complex layers of societal norms that negatively impact women’s lives. These essays have been published in Essence, Ms., and Colonize This! Her article “Navigating to No,” sparked a spate of radio interviews, a television appearance, and a college seminar, as well as earned a personal commentary award from the National Association of Black Journalists. Her essay “No,” which appeared in both Ms. magazine and Utne Reader, was included in the Longman Publishers composition guide, Reading Into Writing. Her creative nonfiction has been included in college curricula in the areas of women’s studies, anthropology, history, and English.

For the past ten years, Kiini has written the KIS.list, an e-column that explores the writing life and encourages readers to fulfill their dreams. She works as an editor and copy editor in New York. She and her daughter live in Brooklyn.

CONTACT

email:
kiiniibura@gmail.com

facebook:
Kiini Ibura Salaam

author photo:


Photo: © Regine Romain

book covers:






Kiini
Ibura
Salaam

Blog


Vol. 102, Advice for Writers

Posted on 7 December 2014

In an interview, someone recently asked what was the best advice I received about being a writer. They also asked what advice I had to give to authors starting out. In the season of giving, I will share that advice with you. Though I give you fair warning—it does not feel like a gift. These truths, when they came to… »

More


Vol. 101, The Boring Wonder of Being Meta About It All

Posted on 9 November 2014

It’s hard not to be meta in this time period when we have so much information flowing at us, but I have noticed that there’s a weird sort of detachment that comes with maturing as an artist. Case in point: Even as I put all this sweat into my novel manuscript, I know that it isn’t the end-all be-all of… »

More


Vol. 100, On Hunger and How It Necessitates Relentlessness

Posted on 23 September 2014

Hunger was quite a theme this weekend. I had lunch with an author. We were both famished by the time we got to the restaurant. She talked to me about her upcoming tour and her latest successes. When I told her I was almost done with my draft and was planning to send it out soon–she said, when are you… »

More


Kiini
Ibura
Salaam

Writings


Speculative Fiction // //

Of Wings, Nectar, & Ancestors

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 about to pop. Her energy… »

More

Speculative Fiction // //

MalKai’s Last Seduction

 “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 him like a rusty pin breaking… »

More

Speculative Fiction // //

At Life’s Limits

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 welcome mat beckons to WaLiLa’s… »

More

Essay Excerpt // //

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 claim on classification. In New Orleans,… »

More

Essay Excerpt // //

When Conception Equals Confusion: The Battle Between Mothers and Would-Be Fathers

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 out mother and daughter. The… »

More

Essay // //

“There’s No Racism Here?” A Black Woman in the Dominican Republic

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 a long time, I refused… »

More

Kiini
Ibura
Salaam

Artwork


Pushing Through, I Discovered the New

Acrylic on Canvas, 2014

Kiini
Ibura
Salaam

Media


Podcast

New Word of the Week Podcast—Legerdemain (Episode 6)

Posted on 23 May 2014

I have somehow managed to squeeze in another podcast–stealing time. Or as my mother used to say it: Robbing Peter to pay Paul.

The word of the week–legerdemain–is fun to say and a wonderful word for me to have learned. Now, what does sleight of hand have to do with writing?

Take a listen.

Kiini Ibura Salaam’s Word of the Week Podcast: Episode 6—Legerdemain

Be well. Be love[d].

Kiini Ibura Salaam


Podcast

Cocksure: Word of the Week for this week’s podcast (Episode 5)

Posted on 19 April 2014

I am fascinated with all the background machinations required for a person to commit to a creative life. This week’s podcast focuses on the absolute necessity of confidence. The word of the week is: cocksure. What I know to be true, is that if as an artist you don’t walk around with your own confidence in your pocket you can get turned around, halted, and annihilated.

Listen to my thoughts on the importance of being cocksure with your artistry.

Kiini Ibura Salaam’s Word of the Week Podcast: Episode 5—Cocksure

The blog post about mental reference that I reference in the podcast is here: http://kiiniibura.com/2013/07/13/vol-96-writing-requires-mental-fitness/


Podcast

Episode 4 of Kiini’s Podcast Is Up!

Posted on 22 March 2014

Wow, sometimes life just swoops in and steals all your extra brain cells and all you can do is run after tasks so you can get them out into the ether and off your brain!

Now that I’ve taken a breath, I can go back to the podcast I recorded about a month ago, but never edited.

The word for this episode? Diffraction.

Get into it and find out what that word has to do with writing and characters!

Kiini Ibura Salaam’s Word of the Week, Episode 4: Diffraction

Be well. Be love[d].

Kiini Ibura Salaam