How I Met Miles Davis and Became the Editor of His Bestselling Autobiography

Malaika Adero, an independent publishing consultant, content developer and writer, is publisher of Home Slice Magazine, an online lifestyle publication and marketplace. She is the author of Up South: Stories, Studies and Letters of This Century's African American Migrations and coauthor of Speak, So You Can Speak Again: The Life of Zora Neale Hurston with Dr. Lucy Hurston. She edited award-winning and bestselling books for Simon and Schuster for more than 18 years, including Miles: The Autobiography. Here, she tells the story of how she met Miles Davis and became his editor—when she was just an assistant. 

My connection to an entertainment lawyer representing Miles Davis got me an exclusive opportunity to publish Miles: The Autobiography. There was no proposal, no writer attached. But Miles was ready to tell his story.

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The Comic Con Experience that Changed My Opinion of Graphic Novels Forever

Early this year, I was reading a Joe Hill novel and I noticed a back-ad for his graphic novel collaboration with artist Gabriel Rodriguez, Locke & Key. I had never read a graphic novel or had much desire to, but the concept was intriguing—and it was Joe Hill, so that in and of itself was interesting to me. At that time, though, I really only gave it a passing thought. Then, in July, I was working at the Simon & Schuster booth at San Diego Comic Con, handing out promotional items, answering questions, and escorting authors. I was flipping through the show program during a slow moment and noticed that Joe Hill would be having a signing in the booth right next to ours later that morning. I figured I would have him sign a copy of his novel Heart Shaped Box, but then it hit me – this was Comic Con! I had been interested in that Joe Hill graphic novel, so…when in Rome! I weaved through the throngs of cosplayers to the IDW booth and purchased my very first graphic novel: Locke & Key #1: Welcome to Lovecraft.

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A Life Without Enemies

I’m interested in politics to the extent that I am loud and opinionated and enjoy yelling at people who don’t agree with me— all of this preferably while savoring pretentious coffee in a major metropolitan area. In other words, I am a registered Democrat. But! Regardless of affiliation, I’ve always…

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The Dog Days of Reading

In his NY Times bestselling book, Travels with Casey, Benoit Denizet-Lewis and his Labrador take a funny, touching cross-country RV trip through thirty-two states and into the heart of America’s relationship with dogs. Here’s Denizet-Lewis’s list of must-read books about every dog lover’s favorite subject – dogs! As I read dog…

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Romancing the Snail

What’s the most creative thing you’ve done to catch a beloved’s attention? If it doesn’t involve piercing them with a delicate Cupid’s arrow (technically a gypsobelum; more whimsically known as a “love dart”) that you’ve crafted inside your own body, then you might want to take a lesson from a…

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Enter a World Where Belief is Suspended

My relationship with Miranda July began a mere three weeks ago, when disaffected 20-somethings across the nation—ahem, across northern Brooklyn—alighted upon her whimsical “Somebody” iphone app. Through this app, one composes a message complete with stage direction and selects an intended recipient. Once finalized, this message “floats” until an enthusiastic…

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Book That Changed My Life

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People can lose their lives in libraries. They ought to be warned.

-Saul Bellow