On My Own Terms: One Actor's Journey
by Adilah Barnes
© 2008 Adilah Barnes


Photo Credit: ColemanPhotography

Chapter Synopses 

Amazon Reviews



Adilah DC book signing/Nikki Giovanni at Busboys and Poets


Click here to view additional photos from the book signing

“Rich with bloodline of heritage, textured, nuanced, and mystic, transforms with the rhythm of an artistic griot . . . we relate to the writer’s experiences, adopting them as our own to examine, explore, and savor . . . This is an important work . . . a profound read with political heart . . . Although this is an Actor’s story, this is the Hero’s journey . . . this is a deeply intelligent, thoughtful, fearless read that dares anyone to categorize it . . . encapsulates a journey, lyrical, poetic and evocative; an uncharted river, challenging the reader to step across.”

  A Gathering of the Tribe Magazine  


“She did it. She did it with dignity and love of the craft. She did it on her own terms . . . This is a must read . . . Adilah has successfully blended art, business and integrity in On My Own Terms. . . So enjoy the journey, and allow Adilah’s insights and life triumphs and tribulations to entertain you, inform you, and cause you much pause for reflection . . . There are so many wonderful things I can say . . .

but, you, the reader will experience her words for yourself.”

— Ella Joyce, Actor  


“I’ve known Adilah since the 70’s when we were both part of the theatre scene in the Bay Area. Not only is she an actor I respect for her well-crafted work, I also tip my hat for what she’s contributed to the theatre community in both Los Angeles and the Bay Area. In both cities, she made things happen by starting organizations that supported actors.”

— Danny Glover, Actor


“Not only have I always admired Adilah’s performing abilities, but I’ve come to respect and value her teachings as well . . . I am lucky to have had her as a guide and friend.”

— Toni Braxton, Vocalist/Actor  


“In all the years that I’ve known Adilah, she has always approached the craft with utmost professionalism, care and a beautiful understated sensitivity, which is a pleasure to watch.”

 Delroy Lindo, Actor



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Contact:  Adilah Barnes Productions

“ON MY OWN TERMS One Actor’s Journey”
Rated #3 in Non-Fiction in Essence Magazine


Adilah Barnes’ frank and unvarnished story about her life and its challenges from Oroville to Oakland to L.A. will be a primer for young actors and a good old-fashioned page-turner for the rest of us.  Sandra Seaton, Playwright

Los Angeles, CA  – (May 18, 2009) – Adilah Barnes, award-winning stage, television, film actor, literary retreat proprietor and education, has been named Essence Magazine #3 Bestseller of non-fiction books for her book, “ON MY OWN TERMS One Actor’s Journey.”  This rating is based on reporting from African American bookstores throughout the country.

Barnes’ national 2009 book junket tour has included bookstores (Borders, Books A Million, Malik’s Bookstore, UC Santa Cruz’s Bay Tree Bookstore and the Underground Bookstore in Sacramento, California. Other venues include colleges and universities, theatres, government agencies, book clubs and private signings. .

Barnes has come an incredibly long way from the small town of Oroville California, has enjoyed years of success and never compromised her integrity along the way.  She is a testament to the truth that it is possible for an actor to have success without the typical trappings of fame.  Her new book “ON MY OWN TERMS One Actor’s Journey” released December 8, 2008, is a fascinating and deeply intimate chronicle about her life, lessons learned, challenges faced and victories won.  Her inspiring book will not only appeal to performers and those wanting a glimpse into the world of performing arts, but will also touch and motivate anyone who has struggled to create, reach personal goals and overcome obstacles.  A deeply spiritual and trailblazing woman, Barnes speaks from the heart in “ON MY OWN TERMS One Actor’s Journey.”

Aside from focusing on Barnes’ multifaceted career, ON MY OWN TERMS brings to life the historical backdrop including the Civil Rights Movement, Vietnam War, Black Power Movement, assassinations of public figures and the unrest of the 1960s during her coming of age.  A review by A Gathering of the Tribe Magazine states, “…this is a deeply intelligent, thoughtful, fearless read that dares anyone to categorize it . . . encapsulates a journey, lyrical, poetic and evocative; an uncharted river, challenging the reader to step across.”

To name a few, Adilah Barnes’ acting achievements have included starring roles in Universal Pictures’s  Erin Brockovich and HBO’s Iron-Jawed Angels as well as five seasons on the television sitcom, Roseanne.  She is co-found of the internationally known Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival (now in it’s 16th year) and since 1990, she has toured her one-woman historical show, I Am That I Am: Woman, Black to 41 states and in three continents including North America, Africa and Europe and she is . Her many awards include a 2009 Alpha

X-Cellence Award and a Red Carpet Award from Women in Theatre in 2007.

ON MY OWN TERMS One Actor’s Journey

Publication Date: December 8, 2008
Trade Paperback; $19.99; 301 pages; 978-1-4257-9008-0
Cloth Hardback; $29.99; 301 pages; 978-1-4257-9033-2

For more information, contact Adilah Barnes Productions at abpro1@sbcglobal.net  To purchase an autographed copy of On My Own Terms One Actor’s Journey online, go to www.adilahbarnes.com, ON MY OWN TERMS may also be purchased online at www.amazoncom,  www.bn.com or www.xlibris.com.