Everybody go tell Twitter that #WeNeedDiverseBooks, and why. If you don’t know why then please click the hashtag and start reading. You’ll find out.
(My Twitter handle is @williealex, by the way.)
Here’s Junot Díaz with more reasons why:
“You guys know about vampires? You know, vampires have no reflections in a mirror? There’s this idea that monsters don’t have reflections. But what I’ve always thought isn’t that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror—it’s that if you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves. Growing up, I felt like a monster in some ways. I didn’t see myself reflected at all. I was like, “Yo, is something wrong with me? That the whole society seems to think that people like me don’t exist?” And part of what inspired me was this deep desire that before I died, I would make some mirrors so that kids like me might see themselves reflected back, and might not feel so monstrous for it.”
A few recent and forthcoming anthologies have stepped up to champion diversity, challenge the literary monoculture, and foster a more flourishing narrative ecosystem. Long Hidden is one. Here’s an interview with editors Rose Fox & Daniel José Older.
“These stories haven’t been “long hidden” because a mountain happened to fall on them. They were deliberately buried, and we are deliberately digging them up and bringing them to light.” – Rose Fox
Kaleidoscope is another such anthology. I’ll be in that one.
Read widely. Some of these stories will be strange to you. As strangers, give them welcome.
EDITED TO ADD: Just spotted Diverse Energies on my bookshelf and slapped my forehead for leaving it out of this post.