Myles E. Johnson

Writer/Editor

“The job of the writer is to make revolution irresistible.” – Toni Cade Bambara

As a child, I was a ghost desperately waiting to be actualized. I was a desperate child. I was desperate to be seen. Imagine being told you do not exist, and believing them. You think to yourself that you are the only person that has experienced this emotion and impulse. No one else on the face of the Earth has skin that has felt the sun or gravity how you have, you think. This was my experience consuming content at the intersection of black and queerness. The feeling of invisibility deepened throughout my life until I ventured outside of the library that I was given. I went into the city of Atlanta as a teenager and found a library specific for people of the LGBT community called Outwrite Bookstore. There was a section specifically for Black literature. In that moment, I believe, I was born. I bought everything I could afford and came back for what I could not. This experience informed my passion for writing and creating media that spoke to and for the Black queer community. This passion has never left and has informed my writing as of today.

Today as an adult, I exist just as thirsty to create, but my desperation has been replaced with determination. It is this determination that had made me release essays critiquing current events, create fictional content for both children and adults that center marginalized identities, create workshops that center community and creativity for black children, and develop creative writing courses for charter schools that disrupts the marginalized child’s belief that they cannot be centered in their own writing without considering the gaze of those that dominate you. My dream is to replace other people’s desperation with determination and empowerment, as well.

I’d like to keep this desperate child in mind while visiting bell hooks’ quote, “When we drop fear, we can draw nearer to people, we can draw nearer to the earth, and we can draw nearer to all the heavenly creatures that surround us.” The goal, for me, is to not only learn how to drop fear, but move nearer to truly revolutionary, transformative, empowering, and entertaining work. This, to me, is the nature of the revolution that I believe can cause massive changes in the world. This is the revolution that cannot be voted for or against. This is the revolution that happens underneath your skin, regardless if your state is blue or red. This is my obsession and purpose, and my life’s work is to make it irresistible.

United States of America

Portfolio

Seven Scribes

Decaying Hope

"Words! Mere words! How terrible they were! How clear, and vivid, and cruel! One could not escape from them. And yet what a subtle magic there was in them!" - Oscar Wilde...

Okayplayer

Lil' Kim, Colorism & Sexual Revolution

I missed the sexual revolutions sparked by Betty Davis and Grace Jones...but I was born just in time for Lil' Kim. With my palms over my eyes, I'd look through the cracks of my...

Okayplayer

Is 'Moonlight' Hollywood's Best Film Of 2016? [Review]

Days after I saw an advanced screening of Moonlight at Morehouse College, I felt haunted. I felt haunted by nothingness and silence. I tried to exercise this muted demon. I...

Philadelphia Printworks

MY ACTIVISM: Mychal Denzel Smith

Illustration by Donte Neal When cultural cleanses are under way, one of the first things burned to the ground are the libraries. It makes sense. In the library, the Gods,...

Okayplayer

Mark Anthony Green Talks 'Fair Use Vol. 1' [Interview]

The ways we archive blackness should be as dynamic, infinite and mutable as blackness itself. The way we preserve blackness should also be as dynamic, infinite and mutable as...

Medium

Loneliness is a Starstruck Thing

It is June and this summer is unlike any summer I have known before. This summer, I am honest. This summer, I am not pretending that I am riding waves when I am drowning in lake...

Medium

Domination as a Bedfellow

If I say that I love myself three times while looking in the mirror, perhaps Nina Simone will appear, pull me by my neck, and drag me into my own reflection. She can drag my...