5 Questions with adrienne maree brown, Author of Maroons: A Grievers Novel

Apr 6, 2023

Headshot of adrienne maree brown

adrienne maree brown grows healing ideas in public through her multi-genre writing, her music and her podcasts. Informed by 25 years of movement facilitation, somatics, Octavia E Butler scholarship and her work as a doula, adrienne has nurtured Emergent Strategy, Pleasure Activism, Radical Imagination and Transformative Justice as ideas and practices for transformation. She is the author/editor of seven published texts and the founder of the Emergent Strategy Ideation Institute, where she is now the writer-in-residence. 

adrienne maree brown will be reading from her new novel, Maroons: A Grievers Novel, published by AK Press, on Tuesday, April 11, 2023, at 12:00 p.m. PST. She will be joined in conversation by dream hampton. This is a virtual event taking place over Zoom.

Where are you writing to us from?

Durham, NC.

What is bringing you joy right now, personally/artistically/habitually?

Making music, feeling more comfortable with the unknown, and the glory of tea. 

Which writers, artists, and others influence your work in general, and this book, specifically?

I can only answer this in the specific because I feel so constantly influenced and inspired and weaving between the existing and uncharted creative worlds – for this book I felt Nina Simone saying to reflect the times and singing about the 22nd century, Octavia Butler telling me to be direct, Samuel Delany infusing inevitable magic, Grace Lee Boggs loving Detroit, Ursula Le Guin reminding me the journey need not be linear, and Lucille Clifton showing me how to hear ghosts.

What books are you reading right now and would you recommend any to others?

I’m reading The Ministry for the Future by Kim Stanley Robinson and just finished the Finding Me audiobook from Viola Davis. Both are easy recommendations of excellent, heartbreaking work that makes me feel more accountable for my life. 

If you opened a bookstore, where would it be located, what would it be called, and what would your bestseller be?

I would open a bookstore on a beach, it would be called Earthseed Reads and instead of a bestseller, the draw would be a rigged Free Library section where you could trade in whatever you just finished on the beach for another book and I would plant Black and sci fi excellence in there.

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