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Nefertiti Austin adopted a baby boy from the county of Los Angeles in California in 2007. Her son was just over six months old when he was placed in her arms in Beverly Hills.
She is the published author of two romance novels, Eternity and Abandon (Kensington Publishing Corporation) and numerous articles in the Los Angeles Sentinel newspaper. In 2004, she spent the summer in literary heaven. First, she was selected to study with Victor LaValle (MacArthur Genius Grant awardee) at VONA (Voices of our Nation of America) in San Francisco; then she worked with Percival Everett (PEN USA 2006 Literary USA awardee) at the Santa Fe Writer’s Conference in New Mexico; and topped those experiences off with a coveted seat in Julia Alvarez’ class at Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference in Middlebury, Vermont.
Nefertiti is the eldest child of 1970s Black Power Revolutionary radicals. Mimicking her father’s political poetry and intrigued by the big books her grandfather always seemed to be reading, she picked up a pen around the age of five. Her decision to become an author crystallized in junior high school after she read “Go Tell It On The Mountain” by James Baldwin. She counts Baldwin, Walter Mosley, ZZ Packer, Barbara Kingslover, J.M. Coetzee and Paolo Coehlo as her literary influences.
Her varied professional background includes a stint as the Director of Submissions at the NAACP Image Awards and editor of its souvenir journal; Director of Communications for a community based organization in South Central Los Angeles; Legislative Aide for a member of the California State Assembly; and a refugee of temporary employment hell. Currently, she is a college instructor, teaching U.S. History within the Los Angeles Community College district and Site Manager of a domestic violence center.
A graduate of UCLA with a Bachelor’s degree in History (honors), she also possesses a Master’s degree in Afro-American Studies, with specializations in U.S. History and Women’s Studies.
Nefertiti holds memberships in Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Pen Center, Write Sister’s and Jenesse Center, Inc.’s Angels, just to name a few.