MLA Platinum Award Press Release

Cynthia Bond biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Cynthia Bond
Photo: Jay Harris

Cynthia Bond

Cynthia Bond Biography

Cynthis Bond has taught writing to homeless and at-risk youth throughout Los Angeles for more than fifteen years. She attended Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, then moved to New York and attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. A PEN/Rosenthal Fellow, Bond founded the Blackbird Writing Collective in 2011. At present, Bond works as a writing consultant, and teaches therapeutic writing at Paradigm Malibu Adolescent Treatment Center. A native of East Texas, she lives in Los Angeles with her daughter.

Cynthia Bond's website

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Interview

Cynthia Bond shares how her family's experiences as "colored" folks in the deep South shaped her debut novel, Ruby.

There are elements of Ruby—locations, characters, stories—that have come from real life. Can you tell us a bit about this?

Ha! It's a bit like a pot of gumbo. There are moments, spices, that have been stirred in slowly—from my life and from the stories of others.

Some of my first memories are of listening to my mother tell stories about her childhood home, a small, all-black East Texas town. A stunningly beautiful and nationally recognized academician today, my mother grew up on a little farm in the piney woods. She has a collection of tiny scars on her body that illustrate her journey. Stepping on a rusty nail and having to wear a slab of salt pork wrapped around her foot for an entire summer. The elbow where a teacup was hurled at her as she bolted out of a door. As children, my sister and I would point to each of these scars, these "chapters" in her young life. In many ways, this is how Ruby began.

As my sister and I grew older, my mother shared more of her story. Of her beloved sister being murdered by the sheriff and his deputies, of so many other siblings who, because of their skin color and the dehumanization of racism, made the decision to flee up North and pass for white.

More than anything, my...

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Books by this Author

Books by Cynthia Bond at BookBrowse
Ruby jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Cynthia Bond but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Edwidge Danticat

    Edwidge Danticat

    Since the publication of her debut work Breath, Eyes, Memory in 1994, Edwidge Danticat has won praise as one of America's brightest, most graceful and vibrant young writers. In this novel, and in her National Book ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Ruby

    Try:
    Brother, I'm Dying
    by Edwidge Danticat

  • Bryn Greenwood

    Bryn Greenwood

    Greenwood is a fourth-generation Kansan, one of seven sisters, and the daughter of a mostly reformed drug dealer. She earned a MA in Creative Writing from Kansas State University and continues to work in academia as an ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Ruby

    Try:
    All the Ugly and Wonderful Things
    by Bryn Greenwood

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