Who are you and what do you do?
I am Iman N. Milner, an actress and writer from Detroit, MI.
What made you create "On Breakups and Beginnings"?
My four year relationship ended abruptly, the first poem in the book is exactly how it happened, and I was devastated. But I knew that I could either use my pain or let it eat me up---so I wrote the book.
What do you love about writing?
I love the feeling you get when you're really in the zone---if you're writing a script, it's when the character's words seem like part of your DNA---if it's a book, it's when the next poem or chapter comes naturally. It's a safe space for me. Whether its screenwriting, blogging or poetry---I know that my voice is safe in my words. And that breaks down any fear or uncertainty about whether or not my thoughts matter.
What was the process like creating "On Breakups and Beginnings"?
It was initially just journal entries. Whenever I would start to think overwhelming and sad thoughts, I'd journal. And I'd just keep writing and sometimes a poem would come out in the middle---like in musicals when someone's just inspired to sing instead of speak---it was that for me. I couldn't put into words the gravity of the betrayal and rejection I was feeling so I gave it romantic language and the book was born.
What do you love about acting? How did you get into it?
Oh man, acting is magic. In theater, it's the magic of having to be there on that night, at that performance to experience whatever happens. In film, it's the magic of the work living forever. But all in all, it's magic because we get to show life. We get to hold that mirror up to society and say "this is really wonderful" or "this is where you should get your shit together". I started acting when I was 8. My dad was a playwright and, at the time, he was raising me. He was putting up his play "Urban Transitions: Loose Blossoms" and there was a role for a little girl in it. He cast me and treated me like every other professional. I was hooked. But my dad, up until his death, always stressed the importance of honoring the ability to be an artist. He stressed getting training and mastering my craft. I had to make that decision to do it as a career and I did.
If you were stuck on an island what five items would you want with you?
Miles Davis' "Kind of Blue", a journal and a really nice gel roller pen, a complete works of Shakespeare and my favorite photo of my mom and dad on their wedding day.
If you had a super power what would it be?
Definitely to read minds. It would just save so much time.
Is there such thing as a soul mate?
If you could meet anyone in history who would it be?
Tupac Shakur or Malcolm X
If you could travel into the stars where would you go?
To wherever my Dad is. Would love to speak with him as an adult. I think we'd vibe even more now.