Kindra M. Austin

 

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Kindra M. Austin is an author and editor from Chesaning, Michigan, USA. Her debut novel was published in April, 2017. To date, Austin has published two poetry books (Constant Muses, and TWELVE, rated five stars by Readers’ Favorite), a novel (Magpie in August), and one novella (For You, Rowena). She is currently working on a second novel (Royce with the Rose Gold Hair), and her third book of poetry (All the Beginnings of Everything).

Other publications include several poems featured on SpillWords; contributions to Sudden Denouement Anthology Volume I, Swear to Me, and All the Lonely People; and two essays advocating for LGBTQ rights, printed in the Ohio Mansfield Pride magazine. She also contributed to, and served as one of four editors for We Will Not Be Silenced: The Lived Experience of Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault Told Powerfully Through Poetry, Essay, and Art.

Austin has been writing for over twenty years. In 2008, she began blogging under different pseudonyms while briefly moonlighting as a writer/editor/internet radio personality. She’s the founder of Poems & Paragraphs, a founding member of Indie Blu(e), and a writer/managing editor at the Sudden Denouement Literary Collective, including Blood Into Ink, and Whisper and the Roar.


Published Works

Available on Amazon, Book Depository, and Barnes and Noble online.

 

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Magpie in August, set in the thumb region of Michigan, is the narrative of Magpie Carey, an acerbic young woman on a soul searching journey with her alcoholic mother in tow. The driving force of my novel is grief, and the healing of emotional wounds through the act of forgiveness; it’s about the fragile relationship between a mother and daughter, death, and learning how to live after experiencing such great heartbreak.

Magpie and her little sister, Renny (Wren), share a birthday in August. This August marks the eighth anniversary of Renny’s drowning in Lake Huron, at the age of ten. Since the tragedy, Magpie spends every one of her birthdays in Tawas with her mother, Lynette. Magpie despises the killer lake; she only goes for Lynette’s sake.

This trip in particular is the most difficult Magpie has yet to face, as she must culminate her strength in order to fulfill a promise sorely made, and at last confront those who haunt her—both living, and dead.

©Kindra M. Austin/Cover Art by Allane Sinclair


 

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Constant Muses is a collection of poems and prose dedicated to Austin’s inspirations, most notably, her late mother.

We served enormous club sammiches made on freshly baked French bread yesterday at your memorial luncheon. The deli at your favorite grocery store had prepared the tasty beauties, and I know you would have been impressed. I cut the sammiches with great precision, like you would have done, providing equally sized portions. Seriously, Mom. I was hyper-focused. Because putting all of my attention into minute details that no one else would have given one good goddamn about, was far easier than watching our family and friends walk through the doors with cards, and pathetically arranged faces.

Book Review: Kindra M. Austin’s Constant Muses, By Mariah Voutilainen

©Kindra M. Austin/Cover Art by Allane Sinclair


 

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Sound and Color streamed through her earbuds. She lay down on the floor, and mused a moment at the smoke rings that rose from her lips and disappeared into the ceiling. The carpet had developed a robust bodily odor. She didn’t mind, and neither did her lover.

He stared at her with indifference, but his mouth said something else entirely; his mouth gaped open in endless surprise. For good or for ill, he’d never been a man who held back his emotions.

She’d been taken by surprise, too. The blood spray was much grander than anticipated; she’d managed to bury the blade deep inside the sweet spot of his neck without even aiming for it.

She turned her head and blew smoke at his perfect face, splashed with crimson death. Sound and Color faded out and into Glycerine.

“See?” she whispered, “I fucking told you so.”

©Kindra M. Austin/Cover Art by Allane Sinclair


 

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TWELVE picks up where Constant Muses ends; this is the yearlong journey of my grief and healing expressed in poems and prose. While most pieces involve my mom directly, some are just byproducts of melancholy. But dark as my days have been, there is one who keeps me tethered to the light—you will know her influence in certain pieces; she reminds me to breathe on my worst days. And so I keep on digging into the pit of me—I know my truths deserve to be heard.

In TWELVE, you’ll feel the mourning of a daughter, the love of a mother, and the highs, lows, and plateaus that make the healing process an intricate one. Above all, you’ll feel the steel of a woman determined to hold on to life. To quote The Crow, one of my favorite films:

“It can’t rain all the time.”

Peace,

Kindra M. Austin, TWELVE

Book Review of Twelve, by Mariah Voutilainen

©Kindra M. Austin/Cover Art by Allane Sinclair