I am happy and blessed to share my interview with Shinjini Bhattacharjee, Editor-in-Chief of the fine new literary journal Hermeneutic Chaos, which published a portion of my new novel with much encouragement and interest. My interview appears in the journal’s companion blog Morphemic Morphology. I hope our words inspire you. Blessings, Kalisha
Welcome to Terspischore’s Atrium, where the Hermeneutic Chaos editors find delight in the elfin task of confronting their contributing authors with some really tough questions.
Today, our Editor-in-Chief Shinjini Bhattacharjee interviews Kalisha Buckhanon, who is undoubtedly one of the most talented writers in the contemporary literary milieu. Her debut venture, Upstate, was published in 2006 to massive critical acclaim, and won an American Library Association ALEX Award and an Audie Award in Literary Fiction for its audiobook, besides being a Hurston-Wright Foundation Debut Fiction finalist. Her sophomore novel, Conception, was greeted with much greater enthusiasm, and won a Friends of American Writers Adult Literature Award. Kalisha has been awarded an Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Prose; a Zora Neale Hurston/Bessie Head Fiction Award at the Gwendolyn Brooks Black Literature and Writing Conference, for her short story “Card Parties” ; the Terry McMillan Young Author Award at the National Book Club Conference; an Honorable Mention in…
I am so happy to share this Solemn book review and audio interview completed by my friend, history professor Sharony Green, whom I myself interviewed in 3 Parts here on Negression this past Women’s History Month, for her book “Remember Me to Miss Louisa: Hidden Black-White Intimacies in Antebellum America.” I truly hope you enjoy her insights in this other window into me, my work and my creative collaborations.
I solemnly swear I had the best time interviewing my dear friend Kalisha Buckhanon yesterday even though we had some serious technological issues. Yes, even with two laptops – one of them a Macbook Pro – and my iPhone, I considered using the tape deck on a boom box just to record her voice.
But we did it. The occasion? The recent release of her new novel Solemn (St. Martin’s Press, 2016).
What a little Mississippi girl sees haunts her in this novel.
Solemn is set in postwar Mississippi, the home state of my mother and maternal relatives. So I was already interested. The plot involves the experiences of Solemn, an African American girl who lives in a trailer park, after she witnesses the murder of a baby. Indeed, in the interview below, among the issues Kalisha and I discussed, is how novelists grapple with dark subjects and…
Originally posted on Mosaic Magazine: With the release of her new book, Solemn, we revisit Kalisha Buckhanon’s interview with Tara Betts, which appeared in Mosaic #23 in fall 2008. ——————————————- When I was growing up in Kankakee, Illinois, Kalisha Buckhanon…
My interview with The University of Chicago Magazine: Author Kalisha Buckhanon, AB’99, AM’07, discusses the power of storytelling, Trayvon Martin, and how professor William Veeder changed her life. Continue reading →
Dr. Terri Francis will be in Chicago this Friday night April 1 at 7PM for a screening and conversation with Kevin Jerome Everson at Black Cinema House! For those unable to make it, please enjoy and share this Women’s History Month Q & A with her on Josephine Baker, Black women in film, and “the burlesque.” Continue reading →
“I think as more scholars and laymen are courageous enough to tell and discuss these messy stories, the stain will be there although inside a larger narrative. The stain is the multi-layered pain. The stain is also complacency with old stories that rightly emphasize real oppression, although to the exclusion of evidence that complicates the oppression.” -Sharony Green…from the final installment of her interview for her recently-released book, Remember Me to Miss Louisa: Hidden Black-White Intimacies in Antebellum America (Northern Illinois University Press; 2015; $24.95; ISBN: 978-0-87580-723-2). Continue reading →
“Yes, it’s hard to write and publish a book like this with Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Sandra Bland and Freddie Gray and so many others no longer with us. Trayvon attended my sister’s church. His mother still does. These souls and racism are right here beside all of my messy evidence, past and present.” -Dr. Sharony Green, historian and author Continue reading →
I am so happy my friend Erika Rose gave me my first ever “fun” interview on her blog Word Crafting Me. We go way back…like, way back. So, read if you dare find out I am not nearly as serious as I know I probably look.
Kalisha and I met in eighth grade back at Kankakee Junior High School about twenty-four years ago. We reunited online in 2005 when she sent me a copy of her first book Upstate. Her career is pretty impressive and I have looked to her as one of my mentors in this process. This is not one of those “what is your book about” interviews because, I plan on buying her book. I can’t wait to see her this spring, bake cinnamon rolls for her, and really catch up.
What do you like to be called?
K: The best writer on the planet.
Is creating your day job or night fling?
In six or fewer sentences describe your usual routine?
K: Wake up. Go to the bathroom. Get a drink of water and turn on a computer, or turn on a computer and get a drink of water…
“Critical study of womanhood, in all its complexities, is needed for today’s women who are still living through so many oppressions. Not that much has happened that we get to escape societal agreements about our sanity, our worth, our ability to contribute, our need for rest and to be protected and to protect and so on.” Dr. Sharony Green, on her work and book “Remember Me to Miss Louisa: Hidden Black-White Intimacies in Antebellum America” Continue reading →
The gospel-influenced and classically-trained pianist and composer is in renaissance of interest and celebration thanks to the establishment of Billy Strayhorn Songs in 1997. The family-owned company’s efforts include marking the centennial of his birth in 2015. The Bill Strayhorn Foundation, Inc’s is committed to deepening appreciation for jazz music in general, starting with Strayhorn. Now longtime fans and new discoverers can enjoy Strayhorn: An Illustrated Life, a fine biographical coffee table book available from Bolden Books/Agate Publishing in Chicago. Continue reading →
SOLEMN is out to request on NetGalley today, after a great weekend where my interview “10 questions with a local author who made it big” ran and THE HEALING author Jonathan Odell gave me a beautiful quote. Continue reading →
The women I want the world to start remembering forever are pictured here. Please click on their photos for more information about their lives and stories, as well as ongoing activism in their memories for this remainder of Black History Month. #SayHerName Continue reading →
It would be a disservice to relegate the play Lines in the Dust as a compulsory offering of social protest fiction and bandwagon outpour, seeking attention on entitlement that audiences passively care about its themes and subjects to indict structural racism in America. To applaud it on … Continue reading →
One book with four different covers is just one aspect of the special story and brilliance behind ‘A Bitter Pill to Swallow’, just released from Blurb Books as the debut novel from writer and visual artist Tiffany Gholar. ‘A Bitter Pill to Swallow’ is a literal and figurative testimony of perseverance, triumph and concern for humanity in a novel debut more than twenty years in the making. Continue reading →
I could not have asked for a better 2015…In ways I could have never planned or imagined, nearly every part of my life as a constant and lifelong writer flourished in its own organic way: fiction, non-fiction, stories, novels, theater, entertaining, reading, teaching and activism. I was just totally blessed. Continue reading →
“For where two or three gather together in my name, there I am with them.” Matthew 18:20 “For God so loved the world he gave his only begotten son, so that whosoever believeth in him shall not perish, but shall … Continue reading →
In “Girlhood,” these girls’ fantasy selves exist and steadily transform to jettison them closer and closer to their real selves in a subtle, tender verisimilitude I have not seen black girls get to have onscreen since Leslie Harris’s 1992 Independent Spirit Award-winning film “Just Another Girl on the IRT.” It is the most honest, determined cinematic viewpoint on black youth since 1994’s “Hoop Dreams.” “Girlhood” is stunning. Continue reading →
It often seems to be feast or famine, but both do multiply themselves if you let them. I made a decision sometime ago to let the feast multiply of anything was to. I thank God for many blessings to share. Continue reading →
“Sins of the Father,” written by Synthia Williams and directed by Sonia L. Surrat, runs at eta Creative Arts Foundation until Sunday, October 25th. Performances Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 3 p.m. Continue reading →