Celebrating Women’s History: N.K. Jemisin

I originally wrote and published this article for work. It is part of a collaboration between Cocoamattic (our Black Employee Resource Group) and The Women of Automattic (our women’s ERG) to celebrate Black women in history.

N.K. Jemisin is a groundbreaking author in the science fiction and fantasy genre, and her contributions to literature make her an important figure to highlight during Women’s History Month. From the imaginative mythology of The Inheritance Trilogy to the apocalyptical world of her Broken Earth series, Jemisin is a powerful storyteller and world-creator.

Jemisin’s achievements in the literary world are impressive, to say the least. She is the first Black person to win The Hugo Award for Best Novel and made history as the first author to win three years in a row and as the first author to win for all three novels in a trilogy. These accomplishments highlight her exceptional talent and her impact on the genre.

“The Most Celebrated Science Fiction And Fantasy Writer of Her Generation.”

The New York Times

Jemisin’s writing has been praised for its originality, depth, and complexity, and she has been credited with expanding the possibilities of science fiction and fantasy. She has also mentored many other writers, particularly those from underrepresented groups, and has helped create a more welcoming and inclusive community within the genre.

Jemisin has been an outspoken advocate for diversity in literature, both in terms of the representation of characters and the voices of authors. She has criticized the tendency in science fiction and fantasy to rely on a narrow range of tropes and stereotypes and has called for more stories that reflect the full range of human experiences.

As one of my favorite authors, she is a personal inspiration to me. If you haven’t read her work, I highly recommend starting with her novelette, Emergency Skin. This short yet impactful piece perfectly introduces Jemisin’s style and perspective, featuring her trademark vivid descriptions and thought-provoking themes. If you’re looking for something longer, my personal favorite is The Inheritance Trilogy.

Leave a Reply