this just in

I am beyond excited to be participating in the first annual Critical Mixed Race Studies Conference.  Fanshen and Heidi proposed a roundtable entitled “Exploring the Mixed Experience in New Media” moderated by historian/scholar Greg Carter and presented by Mixed Chicks Chat hosts and Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival founders/producers Fanshen Cox and Heidi  Durrow, Tiffany Jones (Mulatto Diaries) and Steven Riley (  It was accepted!  Thank you Fanshen and Heidi!  I can’t wait!

Critical Mixed Race Studies Conference

DePaul University Logo

“Emerging Paradigms in Critical Mixed Race Studies,” the first annual Critical Mixed Race Studies Conference, will be held at DePaul University in Chicago on November 5-6, 2010.

The CMRS conference brings together scholars from a variety of disciplines nationwide. Recognizing that the diverse disciplines that have nurtured Mixed Race Studies have reached a watershed moment, the 2010 CMRS conference is devoted to the general theme “Emerging Paradigms in Critical Mixed Race Studies.”

Critical Mixed Race Studies (CMRS) is the transracial, transdisciplinary, and transnational critical analysis of the institutionalization of social, cultural, and political orders based on dominant conceptions of race. CMRS emphasizes the mutability of race and the porosity of racial boundaries in order to critique processes of racialization and social stratification based on race. CMRS addresses local and global systemic injustices rooted in systems of racialization.


mixed roots!

I am so, so sad to be missing this year’s festival!  It just doesn’t feel right.  If you are in L.A. this weekend, do yourself a favor and attend it.  Shine some light there for me, please.

3rd Annual Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival (TM)

June 12-13, 2010

Japanese American National Museum

369 East 1st Street

Los Angeles, CA

The Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival is a non-competitive, annual arts festival dedicated to sharing and nurturing storytelling of the Mixed experience. The Mixed experience refers to interracial and intercultural relationships, transracial and transcultural adoptions, and anyone who identifies as having biracial, multiracial, Hapa or Mixed identity.
A word from the lovely and amazing founders:
Dear Festival Supporters!
If you haven’t reserved your spot at the 3rd Annual Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival, which takes place this weekend at the Japanese American National Museum, 369 East 1st Street , June 12-13, 2010, in downtown Los Angeles, do it now!
Register now! It’s free!
And tickets to the Loving Prize Presentation with Hapa artist Kip Fulbeck and scholar Dr. Maya Soetoro-Ng, President Obama’s sister, are going fast.  Tickets to this event cost $15 for registered Festival attendees and $20 for non-registered Festival attendees. To purchase a ticket to this event, you can call the Museum directly at (213) 625-0414 (credit card only) or pay by check or credit card at the event. Proceeds from this event will go to JANM.
We’re looking forward to seeing you all next week!  We have an amazing Festival line-up filled with talented artists, and fun.  Don’t forget that books & Festival t-shirts will be for sale at the Festival so you can take a little bit of the experience home.  (We can accept cash, checks, and credit cards.)  And bring a cozy sweater in case you get cold — we’re festing inside in a cool air-conditioned room!
See you soon!

Heidi & Fanshen & Jenni

Please also consider supporting this important, all-volunteer project by making your tax-deductible, secure on-line donation here.

mixed roots report, day two

Even though I only got three hours of sleep, I couldn’t wait to get back to the festival Saturday morning.  For me, the day started with two workshops:  Mixed Race in Media Space: Tangible Ways to Voice Your Ideas and Concerns followed by Use It! Turning a Mixed Roots Experience into a Powerful Piece of Writing.  I got a lot out of both sessions.

Next was the Mixed in Hollywood panel discussion moderated by the wonderful Elliott Lewis author of Fade.  On the panel were Angel Nissel co-executive producer and writer for Scrubs/author of The Broke Diaries and Mixed,  and Karyn Parsons of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Sweet Blackberry Productions.  I filmed some of it and will have it on youtube pretty soon.


Another session of readings followed the panel discussion.  Unfortunately, I missed most of them (a girl’s got to eat), but really enjoyed what I did hear from Liberty Hultberg.

Readings were followed by screenings of In the Name of the Son, Parallel Adele, and….


The other films were great and it didn’t kill me to have to watch my big face in a semi-large group of people.  I liked listening to people watching it.  And, from what I can tell, they liked it! Phew!  There was a q&a afterwards, and seeing as I was the only director there, all of the questions were for me.  Thank God people had some questions to ask!  My mom filmed it and I intend to put that on youtube as well.  Pretty soon 🙂

My best friend from college, Sophina, (who was also my first biracial friend) came with some friends, as did my (step)sister Megan, and of course my mom was there and it was really just wonderful.


The event ended with Angela Nissel and Maria P.P. Root being award The Loving Prize for inspirational dedication to celebrating and illuminating the Mixed racial and cultural experience, followed by performances by the very talented Jordan Elgrably, Juliette Fairley, Kaypri, Jason Luckett, Lisa Marie Rollins, Jennifer Lisa Vest, Maija DiGiorgio, and Chris Williams.

Wow! What a line-up, what a weekend!  It all went by so quickly!  It was like a whole week of stuff packed into 2 days.  Heidi and Fanshen, I don’t know how you did it!  But I’m so grateful that you did!  Thank you for including me.


The weekend left me with lots of thoughts.  Some old, some new.  I’m still trying to process and incorporate and figure out what to do with it all.  But if I had to sum it up in one sentence, (today) it would be…

an idea whose time has come=stronger than all the armies

mixed roots report, day one


I wish I had been able to get this up sooner, but I needed a couple of days to process all of the magnificence that was the Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival.  It was kind of magical.  I think I’d been waiting 32 years 7 months and 10 days to get to a place where everyone was like me and, without questions or explanations, understood who I am.  Not just half of who I am.

I arrived a little late and, after a warm welcome from Fanshen and Heidi, my mom and I rushed in to catch some screenings that were already in progress.  I really enjoyed Kim Noonan’s Running Dragon and Mike Peden’s What are you? A Dialogue on Mixed Race.  I missed Maija DiGiorgio’s excerpt from Hollywood Outlaw, but so enjoyed her q&a session and her live performance the following evening.  Such talent!  You can watch the whole movie on youtube at hollywoodoutlawmovie.  I did.  Brilliant!

Next were readings. After moving pieces by Tameko Beyer and an especially great essay by Susan Ito,  Jennifer Lisa Vest had the audience in tears with her beautiful poetry.  Here is a sample of her work not taken from the festival…

Finally, Danzy Senna read from her new memoir Where Did You Sleep Last Night? OMG, Danzy Senna!  If you read my “biracial books” post, you know I love her for Caucasia.  The reading was hilarious and meeting her was great!  I bought the book and can’t wait to read it.


That night was the Loving Day Celebration honoring the 42nd anniversary of the Supreme Court decision in the Loving v. Virginia case that legalized interracial marriage nationwide.  It was so fun!  Meeting so many of the wonderful people I’ve connected with online in the last year was more gratifying than I had imagined it would be.  Having my mom and my (step)sister Megan there was icing on the cake.  There actually was cake.  It was good!  To be continued…



mixed roots, mixed roots, mixed roots!

sigh i can't wait for the weekend

Seriously!! I’m so excited for the festival ( I almost can’t stand it.  I haven’t been this excited for something in I don’t know how long.  It’s like I’m 5 and Christmas is on Friday!  The funny thing is that I have no expectations, other than to meet new friends and reconnect with old ones.  But I’m just so excited!  And a little nervous.  I am really NOT looking forward to seeing my face enlarged on the big screen.  Maybe I don’t have to actually watch it.  Here are the things I do have to do…

go run

There is only one more work out between me and the festival! Yes!

chanel cupcakes

Get new lipstick.  Cupcakes would be nice, but would cancel out the running so I’ll pass. Probably.

suitecasejpgsmallerPack.  Without Indy seeing me.  He’ll get upset and actually get into my suitcase so that I don’t forget to bring him.  I really wish that I could…


Explain to this face a million times where I’m going, why he can’t go, when I’ll be back, and what he’ll be doing while I’m gone.




newlogoIt’s official! Mulatto Diaries: The Movie will be screened this summer at the Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival! I’m so excited! It’ll be shown Saturday June 13th at the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles. Go to for more details!  If you can, make a tax deductible donation while you’re there. Then book a flight and come to L.A. to see my movie. Please.