Author Spotlight: Kathleen Kayembe

When things get chaotic, you can lose focus on you creative writing goals. Read more at

It wasn’t so long ago that Kathleen covered my posts for two months while I adjusted to Life With Baby (a thing in ongoing need of adjustment, according to my posting habits of late). Awards season is here! So this week, I’d like to do a bit of an author spotlight on her.

We went to Smith College together (in fact, she occasionally blames me for choosing Smith). Along with being an amazing writer, she is one of my best friends and I am ecstatic for all her successes.

She attended the Clarion writer’s workshop in 2016. If you’re not familiar with the six-week intensive workshop, suffice it to say that applications are competitive.

Flash forward to 2017. In March, her story You Will Always Have Family: A Triptych came out in Nightmare. The Faerie Tree came out in Lightspeed in May. Her essay on Octavia Butler’s influence on her landed in the book Luminescent Threads.

She may not realize it, but she is now one of those authors she gushes about. And it’s amazing.

Kathleen is one of the best writers I know, and that’s not just my personal bias talking. Family made the SFWA Nebula reading list, while Fairy Tree will appear in the Year’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy anthology.

Both stories have made the reading list for the Locus Awards.

I am beyond stoked for her! This type of recognition is amazing for her writing career. What would make it even more amazing? Winning an award or two.

I know. It’s easy to dismiss awards as not doing a whole heck of a lot. But Kameron Hurley, famously transparent regarding the nuts and bolts of a writer’s income, has made no secret of how winning a Hugo boosted her career. So vote if you can! (Or at least read and share!)

Because Kathleen’s stories are fantastic and this world needs more of them.


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