May 23, 2010


I started reading Heidi Durrow's blog, Light Skinned-ed Girl, what feels like ages ago. It was May 2007 and she had declared it Mixed Experience History Month. That year and every year since she's done a series of posts in May highlighting the achievements of multiracial and multicultural individuals throughout history. I always learn so much.

Read her blog long enough and you find out that she also co-produces and co-hosts the Mixed Chicks Chat podcast, organizes the Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival and won a prize from the wonderful writer Barbara Kingsolver for her debut novel. Anyone else suddenly feeling rather lazy and unaccomplished?

The central character in The Girl Who Fell From the Sky is a biracial girl living in the Pacific Northwest. Much like my Firefly. So I have a soft spot for the book, because of Firefly and because I witnessed bits of its creation through her blog.  It's one of the best novels I've read this year, yet it was apparently turned down by a huge number of publishers who said that no one is interested in books about biracial characters. So you all should go out and read it just to prove them wrong.

The other week I was headed into our local library when I saw a face on a poster that looked awfully familiar. It turned out Heidi Durrow was coming to my town as part of an author series. I tweeted my excitement:

After the talk, I waited in line at the authors' table. When it was my turn with Heidi Durrow, I blurted out OMG ur srsly awesome sauce or something equally erudite. But then things got all exclamation pointy. Because she figured out who I was from my tweet! And she hugged me! And took a picture with me! And I was so happy-flustered that I threw my cell phone at her head! (I wish I were joking.)

I don't get out much. Now you know why.

I brought home a signed copy of her book for Firefly:
"For [Firefly], a fellow mixed chick, in fellowship and love..."
I think it will make a lovely birthday present several years down the road, don't you?

[Dislosure: links are through the affiliate program.]


Anonymous said...

That's so cool! I've been hearing about that book and it sounds great. What a lovely dedication she wrote Firefly.

And, what on earth were those publishers thinking? I know SO MANY children who are the products of two nationalities--Finnish/Malagasy, Moroccan/Norweigan, Korean/Canadian, English/Syrian...there are 4 examples I thought of off the top of my head of kids my kids are friends with. Not to mention my own niece and nephews are biracial.

Anonymous said...

Oooo, I think you just found our bookclub book for July! Thank you. The cell phone sounds like something I'd do/

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh, so exciting! That's going to be an amazing present. =)

Megan said...

After reading your post this morning, I downloaded a sample of this book. I just finished the sample, loved it, and purchased the book for my Kindle. Thanks for the recommendation! It came just in time since I finished my book this morning.

Heather said...

@growfamilygrow - There were two book clubs there that night who had read the book. It says on her website that she meets up with book groups by phone or in person--how fun!

Heather said...

@planetnomad - I know, isn't it ridiculous? Obviously what everyone is really clamoring for is a book about another middle-aged white man who solves crimes. *eye roll*

I'm grateful for people in the publishing world like Kingsolver who are trying to shake things up a bit.

Heather said...

@Megan - Yay!

luna said...

that is full of the awesome sauce. and I love how she knew who you were through your tweet!

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