A friend of Octavia Butler’s during her Seattle years, Nisi Shawl is a founder of the diversity-in-speculative-fiction nonprofit The Carl Brandon Society. Honours include the World Fantasy and Solstice awards. Shawl edited Bloodchildren: Stories by the Octavia E. Butler Scholars; they co-edited Strange Matings: Science Fiction, Feminism, African American Voices, and Octavia E. Butler, and provided the introduction for the Library of America edition of Butler’s collected works published in 2021.
Books by Nisi Shawl
Interviews with Nisi Shawl
In 1995, Octavia Butler became the first science fiction and fantasy author to be awarded a Macarthur ‘genius’ grant. Her writing often dealt with the moral complexities of survival, and foregrounded African American characters at a time where Black protagonists were few. Nisi Shawl, a personal friend and editor of Butler’s collected works, selects five of the best books to read for an introduction to Octavia Butler’s writing.