Eman Rimawi-Doster is a Black and Palestinian woman, born and raised in NYC. For 26 years, she’s been organizing around diversity, equity, and inclusion in disenfranchised communities, while using art, writing, fashion, creativity, and organizing. She learned the ins and outs of taking action and having integrity from her parents. She has made it her life’s mission to change the things that need a push in a more inclusive direction. Her father wanted her to change the things she saw wrong and she does with everything she touches.
She went on to teach creative writing, community organizing, and political science workshops to youth in the city. She’s been focused on organizing disability rights and the intersectionality of it within every aspect of life. She has worked for several dozen non-profits since 1999 and has been committed to the community.
She is committed to educating people on the interconnectedness of disability within multiple communities. Life doesn’t end when you have a disability. In addition to advocating for better paratransit, she’s also involved in several projects around the universal design of buildings in NYC. She’s a disability consultant with D.C. comics and Skybound, speaks at conferences about equity and inclusion for all people with disabilities and she’s the funniest person you’ll ever meet.
What inspired you to start writing this book?
For years, I’ve searched for a story like mine but never found it, so I wrote it myself.
Tell us the story of your book’s current title. Was it easy to find, or did it take forever?
On the one hand, it was easy to find because it’s about my life. On the other, life kept happening, which subsequently pushed my finishing this book back. Luckily, it’s nearly complete now and I can’t wait to publish it.
Describe your dream book cover.
Possibly a collage of pictures from my life
If your book had a soundtrack, what are some songs that would be on it?
Being a Black and Palestinian woman from Queens, NY, it’s going to be a very diverse collection of old-school hip-hop from NYC, Palestinian artists (singers and rappers), classical remixes, and spoken word artists.
What books are you reading (for research or comfort) as you continue the writing process?
I’m not reading anything currently but the last book I read was The Nap Ministry.
What other professions have you worked in? What’s something about you that your readers wouldn’t know?
I’ve been a community organizer, an Executive Director, a facilitator, an educator, and a resource to multiple people in NYC.
Who/what made you want to write? Was there a particular person, or particular writers/works/art forms that influenced you?
I’ve been writing since I was 11 when I realized how much I liked it. I’m 39 now and I still love it. I had some artist friends early on that I respected and wanted to emulate. They encouraged me to keep going and I did.
Where is your favorite place to write?
I love a good cafe or bar where I can sit and write.
Do you have any writing rituals?
Just do it. Don’t think about it too much.
What is one thing you hope readers take away from reading your book?
That they aren’t alone and they have community in me.
Are you a writer, too? Submit your manuscript to Atmosphere Press.