Broken Places & Outer Spaces
Finding Creativity in the UnexpectedBook - 2019
Nnedi Okorafor was never supposed to be paralyzed. A college track star and budding entomologist, Nnedi's lifelong battle with scoliosis was just a bump in her plan--something a simple operation would easily correct. But when Nnedi wakes from the surgery to find she can't move her legs, her entire sense of self begins to waver. Confined to a hospital bed for months, unusual things begin to happen. Psychedelic bugs crawl her hospital walls; strange dreams visit her nightly. Nnedi begins to put these experiences into writing, conjuring up strange, fantastical stories. What Nnedi discovers during her confinement would prove to be the key to her life as a successful science fiction author: In science fiction, when something breaks, something greater often emerges from the cracks.
In Broken Places & Outer Spaces , Nnedi takes the reader on a journey from her hospital bed deep into her memories, from her painful first experiences with racism as a child in Chicago to her powerful visits to her parents' hometown in Nigeria. From Frida Kahlo to Mary Shelly, she examines great artists and writers who have pushed through their limitations, using hardship to fuel their work. Through these compelling stories and her own, Nnedi reveals a universal truth: What we perceive as limitations have the potential to become our greatest strengths--far greater than when we were unbroken.
A guidebook for anyone eager to understand how their limitations might actually be used as a creative springboard, Broken Places & Outer Spaces is an inspiring look at how to open up new windows in your mind.
From Library Staff
LPL_SarahM May 04, 2021
When Nnedi Okorafor was 19 years old, she went in for what she thought was a routine spinal fusion surgery and woke up paralyzed from the waist down. Here she writes about how her disability changed her entire trajectory and how it made her the person and writer we know today.
LPL_IlkaI Aug 20, 2019
Don't let the petite size of this book fool you! Within these eighty-eight pages houses a powerful and life changing experience for its author, Nnedi Okorafor. Her talent with words in the world of fiction crafts a non-fiction like none I have read in quite a while. It is an eloquent and immersiv... Read More »
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"Like my space-faring character Binti, I had to leave what was normal to become greater still. It was in these strange, deep, old and new waters that I was free. And also like Binti, after venturing into, being broken by, and changed by the unknown, it was the return home that brought it all together."
"In order to really live life, you must LIVE life. And that is rarely achieved without cracks along the way. There is often a sentiment that we must remain new, unscathed, unscarred, but in order to do this, you must never leave home, never experience, never risk or be harmed, and thus never grow."
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