Nirmala-Nataraj
I believe we have the power to plant seeds of stories that blossom into life-sustaining myths. Let me help you find yours.

About Me

I’m Nirmala Nataraj, a New York–based writer, editor, book midwife, theater artist, and mythmaker. Welcome to my site, which is the crossroads between your creativity, life force, and personal fulfillment via the portals of myth, storytelling, word magic, and collective liberation!

As someone who has woven in and out of a number of different word realms—nonprofit communications, advertising, theatre, publishing, and community arts, to name a few—I know that liberation is possible through the stories we choose to tell. As a first-generation South Asian American, I myself exist in the liminal spaces between cultures, art forms, and languages—and it is this multiplicity of narratives that informs my personal and professional approach.

I am the author of three bestselling books about space and cosmology, the ghostwriter of a dozen works (primarily in the arena of spiritual writing, memoir, and young adult fiction), and a book development editor who lovingly stewards my clients from planting the seeds for their stories to watching them burgeon and flourish in the world. My zeal for storytelling and mythmaking, wedded with my former work as an activist and counselor, has led me to craft a variety of books about overcoming addiction and moving beyond self-help and into collective liberation. My strengths, passions, and areas of interest include subjects as varied as the cultural effects of technology, public art, sustainable architecture, sexuality, ecology, performance studies, and what it means to seed revolutionary acts of beauty in a world steeped in suffering and injustice.

I believe that every book has its own spirit, and it’s up to us to simply get out of the way and do whatever is necessary to usher that spirit into form. Some of the guides on my journey include: irreverence, play, the incantatory power of words, the gifts of the more-than-human realm, and the grace of falling apart and dispensing with preconceived notions about what creativity and power are supposed to look like. Oh yeah—and tons of plant tinctures, organic skincare, bottles of biodynamic wine, and Epsom salt baths!

My colleagues include New York Times–bestselling authors, spiritual teachers, social changemakers and shit starters, mushrooms, trees, and some particularly talkative chipmunks who come to visit me during the golden hours before dusk, when I am most creatively potent.

In all my work, I emphasize the power of claiming authority over our voices and personal truths, while also surrendering to the creative process and ceding control and ownership over it.

I am committed to steadfast creative inquiry (I dig questions more than answers) and new definitions of self and community that work to dismantle heteropatriarchal/imperialist/misogynist/racist frameworks about whose words matter and how they should be arranged on a page or stage. As a multi-genre collaborator and creative facilitator, I believe in messiness, multiplicity, competing and coalescing narratives, generativity in the midst of strife, the coexistence of love and justice, and breathtaking beauty as a natural consequence of this wild ride.

My writing and editorial clients have included:

The book that started it all

EARTH + SPACE

(Chronicle Books)

Take a tour of the universe with this breathtaking collection of photographs from the archives of NASA. Astonishing images of Earth from above, the phenomena of our solar system, and the celestial bodies of deep space will captivate readers and photography lovers with an interest in science, astronomy, and the great beyond.

Each extraordinary photograph from the legendary space agency is paired with explanatory text that contextualizes its place in the cosmic ballet of planets, stars, dust, and matter—from Earth's limb to solar flares, the Jellyfish Nebula to Pandora's Cluster. Featuring a preface by Bill Nye, this engaging volume offers up-close views of our remarkable cosmos, and sparks wonder at the marvels of Earth and space.

Earth-Space-book-2buy-book
Stargazing-Book-Nirmala-Nataraj

Check out my latest book!

STARGAZING

(Chronicle Books, 2019)

Stargazing: Photographs of the Night Sky from the Archives of NASA is a photographic collection of the night sky's most extraordinary phenomena. These images from the archives of NASA reveal stunning photos of the cosmos, from radiant aurora borealis to awe-inspiring lunar eclipses. Complete with a preface by Bill Nye, this collection of photographs perfectly captures the wonder of looking up at the night sky.

buy-book

Blog Posts

June 19, 2020
An Inventory of Seeds: A Poem

Lately, I have been thinking of how the seeds that have been planted by years of practice are only sprouting forth now. And how some are still lying dormant in fallow earth, waiting for their time, not knowing if their time will ever come. And yet, how every word, deed, action, bears its fruit and […]

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June 19, 2020
Fear Is the Mind Killer

“Fear is the mind killer,” I should have said after receiving her cautionary text message about compulsory lockdowns across the nation and militias patrolling the streets at night to make sure that nobody looted or rioted. I knew that awareness of the right to civil disobedience was rapidly eroding in this strange new era, but […]

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June 19, 2020
Why Don't the Poor Understand (As Soon As They Stop Being Poor)?

When Shawn and I were on our walk today, we talked about money. How we are beholden to it and wish to be free of it all at once. How we hate being under the thumb of capitalism, but how it also offers us access to certain realities we’ve been conditioned to crave and to […]

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My desire is to create a community and network of weavers, artists, dreamers, and makers—outside of the corporatized world of social media, personal branding, and incessant marketing. If you would like to receive resources on writing, editing, book coaching, and personal mythmaking, subscribe to my newsletter.
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