This year is the 10th anniversary of the great science fiction writer Octavia E. Butler’s untimely death; next year marks what would have been her 70th birthday. Clockshop, a Los Angeles-based arts organization, is partnering with several other local organizations and institutions—including The Huntington, the Library Foundation of Los Angeles’ ALOUD series, and the Armory Center for the Arts, to name a few—on a yearlong series of events celebrating Butler’s life and work. It promises to be an exciting time for afro-futurism a genre that owes much to Butler.
BUT the what I wanted to highlight here was not just looking forward to those celebrations but Butler’s own ability to “look forward” for what she wanted. In her life and in her writing. Among her effects were more than 8,000 individual items; documents and papers donated to The Huntington. Below is what was written on the inside cover of one of her writing notebooks.