Terpischore’s Atrium with Kalisha Buckhanon


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

Originally posted on Morphemic Morphology:

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…

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A Negression

Easter 1980

Any African-American who has achieved a fraction of what they set out to do in life will tell you a peaceful and unencumbered path is impossible. Some quietly accept prejudice and discrimination, and probably are better off for it. Others, like myself I admit, talk very loud. Both coping styles carry their price. Continue reading

Remembering Mary Ellen Pleasant

Free Enterprise

Mary Ellen Pleasant, one of America’s first Black female millionaires, made her fortune in the San Francisco area as a partner and consultant to Gold Rush enterprisers. In the 19th Century, racist conductors ejected Pleasant from her trolley car on two occasions for which she sued in landmark civil right cases history has all but forgotten. Continue reading

Have You Heard? Nervous Conditions by Tsitsi Dangarembga

Nervous Conditions

Set in Rhodesia in the 1960’s, Tsitsi Dangarembga’s NERVOUS CONDITIONS (1988) is a classic novel enduring unto today for its memorable protagonist and strong statements about gender inequities of women, stolen educational access and resource gaps in a politically-charged nation. Continue reading

The Hollywood Reporter Addresses Black Stars’ Racial Abuses Through Life of Hattie McDaniel, the First Black Oscar Winner


In addition to recasting Hattie McDaniels for today’s audiences as less of an easy-street heroine who won the first Oscar for Blacks and more of a lifelong victim of emotional abuse in Hollywood due to her color, any Millennials who love Hollywood but never knew Hattie can no longer say they were not told. Continue reading

My Story IN 21 DAYS as part of Winter Tangerine Review’s “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” Project

Hands Up Don't Shoot

Proud for the beautiful opportunity to be featured in this project published by Winter Tangerine Review. My story “In 21 Days” appears. I wrote the story to provide my energy to the reality of a disproportionate number of Black Americans who are sentenced to hard time or who await the death penalty. Continue reading

It’s Hard Out Here For a Sister…

Kamp Kizzy

If Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Trayvon Martin and Oscar Grant have leaped forth as dark angels to provide us with long-overdue narratives to outline and verify real patterns of mistreatment and injury black men endure, then “Rudy’s” puzzling treatment on the same network she helped bolster so gives us similar analogy for black womahood in America. Continue reading

Great African-American Books of 2014

Saint Monkey

This gallery contains 15 photos.

Compiling this list of 2014 books by or about Black Americans which I read cover-to-cover, or keep on my “To Read” mantle, is how I have officially begun my holidays; there is just something about putting hands deep into books (with covers and pages) that makes everything all right. Continue reading

Spirit of Writing Week 9: Useful Gifts For Writers (and Free Tips too…)

Spirit of Writing

There is something in the nature of the loner personality both ill-fated and magically destined to imagine for a living which creates a kleptomania for life overall, the evidence of which are astounding collections of curiosities and mementos and souvenirs and of course BOOKS. And, it is actually okay for you to add to it with the right gifts…End 2014 writing, not planning to write again in 2015. The Spirit of Writing: 12 Weeks of Practice. Continue reading