PINNED! What I do

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I do two things: write and work for the improvement of my community. On the writing front, here are reviews from some of my latest projects:

A starred review from Kirkus Reviews for my middle grade novel, The Usual Suspects.

A starred review in Publishers Weekly for my short story collection, The Voices of Martyrs

-A write up in the New York Times of my novella, Buffalo Soldier

I do a lot of community development work. My passions have always included social justice, economic equity, and racial reconciliation, which is why I work at The Oaks Academy Middle School and do work for  community organizations like the Kheprw Institute. Most of my work centers around the 46208 zip code (one of the “worst” zip codes in the country). We specialize in Asset Based Community Development, finding the gifts and talents within the community and networking them to improve the quality of the community.

I launched a Patreon because some friends wanted a way to help support the work that I do in the community. If you would like to support it (and receive updates on the work that’s being done) please feel free to join. Thank you so much!
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I just wanted to say “Thank you!” to all of my Patreon backers. Your support helps the work that I do in the community, both the Indianapolis community as well as my writing community. Writers are paid on an erratic schedule and cash-flow issues are common; community organizers even moreso. Your financial support has allowed me to leverage opportunities for other creatives as well as buy me some breathing room for more time for writing.

Speaking of the writing, a story up mine recently sold and is now up over on Uncanny Magazine. The Migration Suite: A Study in C Sharp Minor was deeply inspired by my work in the community (as well as by the artists there who push me creatively). And I was interviewed about the story by Caroline M. Yoachim here.

I have two other stories which are under consideration at different magazines. And I’m almost done with a new short story/novelette currently titled “Bound by Sorrow.” It’s a sword & soul/Afrofuturist piece. It is helping me think through the faith and magic system for my Afrofuturist novel, Sweep of Stars, which I’ll be starting in a couple weeks.


Meet The Afrofuturist Sci-Fi Writer Changing Indianapolis

I feel like I’m a bit in make-up mode since I was so quiet on my Patreon over the summer (thus extra pics and pimpin’). Though it’s not like I’ve been slacking. Indianapolis Monthly ran a nice piece on me called Meet the Afrofuturist Changing Indianapolis and Nuvo wrote a nice piece on our Indy Black Authors Gathering. Plus my whirlwind Clarion, Shared Worlds, Scares That Cares jaunt.

Here’s a round up of the latest being offered over on my Patreon:


Where I’ve Been edition – a couple shots from my whirlwind “tour”.

Ferb helps clean the turtle tank (Sept)


Wrath (a peek at a work in progress co-written with Wrath James White)

Serpent (a peek at a work in progress co-written with Jason Sizemore)


Marketing Pitches – got a project that you’re trying to come up with a perfect elevator pitch for? Here’s some of the things I’ve done.

Writing Through Tough Times – got a lot going on in your personal life and are wanting to figure out how to get writing done in spite of it all? Here’s some of the things I’ve done. (Sept)


-This Patreon was largely started because some folks approached me wanting a way to support my work in the community. Here’s where I keep those folks updated on what I’ve been up to. Includes an update on Café Creative, the artist platform launched by the Kheprw Institute.

-For September, we’ll be looking at Creating a Better Future and the genesis of One World. Don’t know that is? This is where you find out.

Obviously, there are a couple new community and writing initiatives that I’m a part of that are in the beginning stages. But know that without your support, none of this would be possible. So again, thank you!

I launched a Patreon because some friends wanted a way to help support the work that I do in the community. If you would like to support it (and receive updates on the work that’s being done) please feel free to join. Thank you so much!
Become a Patron!


The Migration Suite: A Study in C Sharp Minor up on Uncanny Magazine

My story “The Migration Suite: A Study in C Sharp Minor” is up on the Uncanny Magazine site. But I wanted to talk about my inspiration for the story.

Pianist extraordinaire, Joshua A. Thompson, was doing his part of his “Black Migrations, Urban Realities” series down at Indiana Artsgarden and I wanted to check him out. He was performing with Manon Voice (it was actually my first time meeting the two of them face-to-face). By the time he got to the piece ‘Melancholia’ (composed in 1953 by Duke Ellington), with Manon Voice reciting the original composition “We Are Here,” I was through. I didn’t even realize that my pen had been jotting down ideas.

I’m constantly pushed by the artists in my city, no matter their craft, as they live their art out loud. This is a story inspired by community. (Special shout out to William Rasdell who let me pester him with questions about his work with the migration of the Diaspora.)

Anyway, here is the link to the story.

Also, the wonderful Caroline M. Yoachim did an interview with me about the story. You can read it here.

And the story was picked as one of the Must-Read Speculative Short Fiction: July 2019:

The Migration Suite: A Study in C Sharp Minor by Maurice Broaddus

“I believe all our journeys are to be celebrated, mourned, and remembered.” If you aren’t already familiar with the great Maurice Broaddus, let this story be your introduction. Broken into five stanzas, this science fiction-tinged tale tells of the movement, both willing and unwilling, of Africans and their descendants. We see glimpses of their lives from the first people to slave traders to runaway slaves to those who moved from the South to the North to those who left Earth entirely. Broaddus writes worlds that feel eerily similar to ours and uses them to expose the harsh truths we don’t want to see. “The Migration Suite: A Study in C Sharp Minor” is a distillation of the best of Broaddus.

Uncanny Magazine – July 2019, Issue 29

There was also a review over on the Quick Sips Review site. It reads…

This series continues to be one that explores the importance of having spaces that don’t cater to whiteness. That don’t attempt to negotiate or co-exist with whiteness. That don’t necessarily even aim to struggle against racism in order to build a better, unified world. Because in part the truth behind that particular utopian bend is that the work is expected to be done by the oppressed. They are supposed to convince the powerful that there is value in diversity and equality. Further, it’s not supposed to be instantaneous, and in the mean time victims of racism are supposed to understand that the system can’t change quickly. That they must be patient. And it’s refreshing to see the alternative to that, where a group of people decide they are going to split away and form a place that has a new system. That can change instantly. That doesn’t need to bring with it the racist infrastructure so long as it brings with the memories of what happened, the spirit of the people who have survived, and who still want to be free. The piece skips forward in time, spending long enough with each new character to give a feel for the worlds they are in, that they are leaving, that they are going to. And while it doesn’t give too much of an arc for each character, it gives a generational arc that carries through, from very early times to the future. And it further contextualizes the setting of the series as a whole, showing the events and the inspirations that led to the settling of First World (a lunar colony) by black settlers. It’s deep and complex, building up and up until it can reach the moon itself. A wonderful read!

It’s also a story with homework assignments, if you want to know the soundtrack that I was writing by:

7 Traceries: No. 4. Out of the Silence


William Grant Still (A Deserted Plantation: Spiritual)


Valse Suite, Op. 71, “Three-fours”: II. Andante


Adagio in F Minor by Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges


Duke Ellington: Single Petal of a Rose


In the Bottoms – Suite: Prelude: Night


In the Bottoms – Suite: Honey: Humoresque


In the Bottoms: II. His Song


Africa (arr. for piano) : Africa: II. Land of Romance (arr. for piano)

Meet The Afrofuturist Sci-Fi Writer Changing Indianapolis

Well, Indianapolis Monthly did an entire profile (written by Lou Harry) on me in their latest issue. I am…overwhelmed, to say the least. It begins:

This spring, local science-fiction author Maurice Broaddus signed the biggest contract of his life, a six-figure offer to write an Afrofuturist space trilogy. But even as he begins the intricate task of creating other worlds, Broaddus seems most dedicated to saving this one.

[Read the whole article here]

ALL MY MAY OFFERINGS! (It’s a busy season)

Here’s all I have going on this month (and my blog links where to find more information about them):


Our Audacity by Maurice Broaddus, guest editor
Words from the Editor-in-Chief by Jason Sizemore

Dune Song by Suyi Davies Okungbawa
Fugue State by Steven Barnes & Tananarive Due
N-Coin by Tobias S. Buckell
Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Memphis Minnie Sing the Stumps Down Good by LaShawn M. Wanak
When We Dream We Are Our Own God by Wole Talabi
Pimp My Airship (novel excerpt) by Maurice Broaddus

Let’s Talk About Afrofuturism by Troy L. Wiggins

Interview with Author Steven Barnes by Andrea Johnson
Interview with Cover Artist Godwin Akpan by Russell Dickerson

*The Quick Sips review of the issue


When a gun is found near their school, seventh-grade pranksters Thelonius Mitchell and his best friend, Nehemiah Caldwell, must work together to solve the mystery before being blamed for something they didn’t do.

*Kirkus review

*Kirkus profile on me

*John Scalzi’s The Big Idea

*Barnes & Noble’s Edge-of-Your-Seat Thrillers for Young Crimesolvers


All the poet called Sleepy wants to do is spit his verses, smoke chiba, and stay off the COP’s radar—all of which becomes impossible once he encounters a professional protestor known as (120 Degrees of) Knowledge Allah. They soon find themselves on the wrong side of local authorities and have to elude the powers that be.

When young heiress Sophine Jefferson’s father is murdered, the careful life she’d been constructing for herself tumbles around her. She’s quickly drawn into a web of intrigue, politics and airships, joining with Sleepy and Knowledge Allah in a fight for their freedom. Chased from one end of a retro-fitted Indianapolis to the other, they encounter outlaws, the occasional circus, possibly a medium, and more outlaws. They find themselves in a battle much larger than they imagined: a battle for control of the country and the soul of their people.

*Barnes & Noble This Week’s New Sci-Fi & Fantasy Books

*Mary Robinette Kowal’s My Favorite Bit

*My guest post on the worldbuilding behind Pimp My Airship


Tandy Kahananui is at her best when she’s fighting monsters and exploring dungeons — in Alternis, the video game that she’s making. Then she discovers that somehow, someone’s stolen her game. But it’s not pirates trying to make a buck. Alternis is the seed for an ambitious top-secret project to keep the world from plunging into war. And Team USA wants her on board. It’s not just a game anymore. The fate of the world is in her hands. Can she help Team USA hold its own? Can she even survive?

*Summer Glau talks about narrating the first season of Serial Box’s science fiction story Alternis


Do Not Go Quietly

This anthology of stories of resistance has the story “What the Mountain Wants” co-written by me and Nayad Monroe.

MO*CON 2019 (a re-cap in pictures)

The Pimp My Airship Universe Stories Round Up

In a world where America lost the Revolutionary War, the world of “Pimp My Airship” was born. Though the short story came first, subsequent stories have fleshed out the world. You don’t need to have read the stories before reading Pimp My Airship: The Novel, but there are Easter eggs in it for those of you who have. For you completists, here are the stories in their chronological (not publication) order (including a few which aren’t out, but were in my head so you can see where I was going):

“The Problem of Trystan” – Hot and Steamy: Tales of Steampunk Romance (DAW, 2011)
Reprinted in Mammoth Book of Gaslit Romance (2014)
-A tale of an early adventure of Sophine Jefferson/Deaconess Blues’ parents

“Steppin’ Razor” – Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine (February 2014)
Reprinted in Lightspeed Magazine (Issue 87 – August 2017)
– Espionage agent, Desmond Coke, gets caught up in the Jamaican government’s intrigue and conspiracy over the fate of a young boy named Lij Tafari.

Buffalo Soldier – (2017)
– Having stumbled onto a plot within his homeland of Jamaica, former espionage agent, Desmond Coke, finds himself caught between warring religious and political factions, all vying for control of a mysterious boy named Lij Tafari. Assassins, intrigue, and steammen stand between Desmond and Lij as they search for a place to call home in a North America that could have been.

(sequel to Buffalo Soldier – unwritten)
-The world of Steppin’ Razor collides with Buffalo Soldier as Lij Tafari comes into his own as the figure known as the Star Child.

(Babylon Systems – unpublished novelette)
-Now imprisoned, the Star Child faces down the government’s system of oppression and population control from the inside.

All Gods Chillun Got Wings – Steampunk Universe (Alliteration Ink, 2016)
-A tale of an early adventure of Sophine Jefferson (Deaconess Blues) and Carlton Drayton ((120 Degrees of) Knowledge Allah)

“I Used to Love H.E.R.” – HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!! & Other Improbable Crowdfunding Projects (John Joseph Adams, 2014)
-The Oxford incident that gets Sophine Jefferson expelled from Oxford University.

“(120 Degrees of) Know the Ledge” – Not of Our Kind (Alliteration Ink, 2014)
-In trying to figure out who he is, Carlton Drayton returns to his home only to find that the organization he belonged to is corrupt. In leaving it behind, he must grow into something else.

(Axioms of Creamy Spies – unpublished short story)
-The head butler, Ishmael Washington, oversees Lord Leighton Melbourne’s household and has a secret. Luckily, no one ever notices the help.

“Pimp My Airship” – Apex Magazine (2009)
Reprinted in I Can Transform You (Apex Books)

Pimp My Airship – A Naptown by Airship Novel – Apex Books (2019)


[My Patreon is basically designed to give me flexibility in doing work in the community. I had people who learned what all I was doing in the city and wanted to be able to support me and I wanted to stay off budget for the organizations I work with. So, my patrons support my work and being able to give back to the community. For that, I thank you all so much.]

I am still in recovery mode from a very successful Mo*Con and am settling in for a summer and fall of travel and writing (since I have two books due this year). There will hopefully be more exciting news before too long.


At the Awesome Pics level:

-How to annoy Ferb in Four Simple Steps (spoiler: it’s one step)

At the Awesome Blog Post level:

-On Setting Writing Goals

At the Awesome Pimpin’ level: Wrath, chapter 9, an unseen project by me and Wrath James White. And Serpent, chapter 6, an unseen project by me and Jason Sizemore. [Yes, I will eventually be running some sneak preview chapters from my upcoming space opera trilogy]

At the Awesome Community level:

Updates on my work with:

-Afrofuture Friday

-The Build

– Creative Renewal Arts Fellowship Exhibition

-my visit to a class at the University of Indianapolis

-Mo*Con – including the behind the scenes details on what your Patreon support was able to accomplish

At the Awesome Books level:

Signed copies of both Pimp My Airship and The Usual Suspects have been mailed out.

And more! Look at what y’all got me out here doing!

As always, thank you for your support!

Become a Patron!

Mo*Con 2019: R/evolution (UPDATED: with pics, video, and audio)


Here is the livestream of the Cafe Creative panel at the Center for Black Literature and Culture.

Here is some footage from the Cafe Creative prelaunch reception

If you left the Café Creative soft launch early, you missed the dance party that broke out…


Here’s the Afrofuturism as Community Development livestream

And the “Wine with (t0) Jen” Interview as a podcast from Just Keep Writing

Pics by Wildstyle, Stacia Moon, LaShawn Wanak, Clarence Young, Sally Broaddus

Now that I’ve had a chance to rest and recover, allow me to say this: this year’s Mo*Con was magic. So, this is my big thank you post:

Make no mistake, it’s the people that made Mo*Con so magical. It’s been my privilege to watch it grow (at the speed of relationships) and this was our largest (and smoothest running!) Mo*Con. Thank you all for coming, being a part of things, and making it so special.

One of the things I’ve learned working with The Learning Tree and the KheprwInstitute is to appreciate and celebrate the gifts and talents in our community. Be they artists like Sylvia Ess McKee or Mechi Shakur, poets like Januarie York (who Held. It. Down. Friday night), photographers like Wildstyle Paschall(no one, and I mean NO ONE—accept no imitators—covers the scene like him), or pastors like Mike Mather who do so much in the community.

We DO NOT play around when it come to food and drinks at Mo*Con. Here are some of the (not so hidden) treasures in our community. Ro Townsend and Earl E. Townsend of GRoE, Inc.Chef Oya’s The TRAPJamaican Breeze Sports Bar & Grill (Ja’Net was the real MVP of Mo*Con), We Run This Foods, and Sip & Share Winery.

I cannot say enough about the amazing magic brought by my guests of honor. Sheree Renée ThomasTroy L WigginsBill CampbellDiana M PhoJen Udden. Just … wow. #amazing

Mo*Con returned last year and continues with the help and support of some amazing community partners: the Kheprw Institute (including the support of The Build, Afrofuture Friday, and Café Creative), Spirit & Place, and the Center for Black Literature and Culture.

Which brings me to the Mo*Con planning committee. Our safety officers, JJ Walker (to whom Pimp My Airship is dedicated) and Nick BrightStacia Moon(is there anything she can’t do?). Sibeko JywanzaJerry GordonRodney Carlstrom.

And Sally Broaddus. For supporting and hosting this madness. I couldn’t do it without you.

It takes a village and I love my tribe.


The Final Apex Magazine Issue (Guest-Edited by Moi!)

First time I guest edit Apex Magazine:
Jason Sizemore: You get 10K of content to edit.
Me: Great! *turns in 20K*

Second time:
@apexjason: You get 20K of content.
Me: Great! *turns in 40K*

Me: I have an idea for a third issue
@apexjason: Great! *ends Apex run*

The last issue of Apex Magazine is out now. I can’t tell you how proud and impressed I’ve been with Jason Sizemore’s epic run. I’ve been part of the Apex Magazine family almost from the beginning. It was ten years ago when he bought “Pimp My Airship” for the magazine and have come full circle with the novelization also coming out this month. I’ve been their reprint and non-fiction editor for the last couple years.

This is my second time guest-editing an issue of Apex Magazine. Issue 120 features fiction by Steven Barnes and Tananarive DueSuyi Davies OkungbowaWole TalabiTobias BuckellLaShawn M. Wanak, and an essay by Troy L Wiggins.

If the magazine is going to go out (for now) this is a good note to go out on … if I do say so myself.

CALLING ALL (INDY) ARTISTS: Cafe Creative (a pre-Mo*Con event)

Cafe Creative Flyer_B (2)

The Kheprw Institute is launching a new initiative, Café Creative. As a pre-Mo*Con event, we’ll be talking to a panel of writers about the work they’ve been doing around the country in their communities:

Sheree Renee Thomas (Editor of  Dark Matter: A Century of Speculative from the African Diaspora, author of Sleeping Under the Tree of Life, founder of the Black Speculative Arts Movement Memphis), Troy Wiggins (Author as well as co-editor of Fiyah Magazine of Black Speculative Fiction), Bill Campbell (Author of Sunshine Patriots and founder of Rosarium Publishing), and Rev. Mike Mather (Author of Having Nothing, Possessing Everything: Finding Abundant Communities in Unexpected Places and Pastor of Broadway United Methodist Church).

That conversation would be awesome enough, but it will also be followed by a networking time for artists and those interested in the work. So, join us for conversation as we come together to dream about possibilities.


Date: May 2, 2019

Time: 6:00pm

Location: Central Library, 40 East Saint Clair Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204


Date: May 2, 2019

Time: 8:00pm

Location: Kheprw Institute, 3549 Boulevard Place, Indianapolis, IN 46204

Patreon March-April Round Up

[My Patreon is basically designed to give me flexibility in doing work in the community. I had people who learned what all I was doing in the city and wanted to be able to support me and I wanted to stay off budget for the organizations I work with. So, my patrons support my work and being able to give back to the community. For that, I thank you all so much.]

Historically, this is my least productive time of the year. That was one of the reasons I originally retired Mo*Con, since the months leading up to it were so stressful with all the running around I had to do that I didn’t get much writing done. However, with a different job situation and community partners coming alongside me, it’s opened up a bit of a window for me. That said, the reason this is late is because I didn’t know how the timing of certain news being announced would time out. I was trying to wait as long as possible and … well, here’s where I am. So here’s a two month round up!

At the Awesome Pics level:

-The many faces of Ferb (okay, the two faces of Ferb: “it’s all about me” and “I want what you have”)

-Ferb attempting to be the laziest cat to rule our household

At the Awesome Blog Post level:

-On Being Bi-Polar and a Writer

-The inside scoop on my new book deal

BTW, if you want to check out parts of my Afrofuturist universe, here are a couple free stories:

El is a Spaceship Melody

At the Village Vanguard

At the Awesome Pimpin’ level: Wrath, chapter 7 & 8, an unseen project by me and Wrath James White. And Serpent, chapter 4 & 5, an unseen project by me and Jason Sizemore. [Yes, I will eventually be running some sneak preview chapters from my upcoming space opera trilogy]

At the Awesome Community level:

Updates on:

-A burgeoning black arts movement in the city

-The Build (recently featured in Nuvo)

-My mentoring project

And more! Look at what y’all got me out here doing!

As always, thank you for your support!

Become a Patron!