First go check out how many people are on this list of authors of color that Roxane has been gathering from readers.
Often outside of genre specific lists and organizations there is nowhere you will ever see that many authors of color on a list together. Honestly in all my life outside of things my Mom put together at the library or lists I’ve compiled myself I have never seen it happen and it’s beautiful.
I had intended to talk more about what editors can do to help themselves and the rest of the lit world start dealing with the situation but I’m too tired.
I can say this.
In the situation of representation in the lit world, sometimes people need to shut up and listen to what the marginalized people have to say. I know that’s hard. I know that everyone wants to proclaim their misplaced color blindedness or I LOVE POCness but don’t. Shh. Listen to what we have to say instead.
Start to let it sink in that often a lot of POC can be heavily impacted by Double Consciousness, more so when we write non fiction or write about our own lives.
Start to think of approaching POC in the lit world as you might approach any other subject you might empathize with but never will really understand. Don’t barge in all ass and elbows demanding shit. Nothing. Not an explanation, not reasons why X thing must be done. Just don’t. We don’t like it.
Open your eyes dude. There are thousands of people of color writing a lot of things. Some of those things might make you uncomfortable. Some of them might hurt your feelings. Some of them will boggle you. That does not mean that subjectively the work isn’t good or excellent. Remember that.
Also, if you find yourself about to compare one author of color to another because they might have the same ethnic background, don’t. Don’t do that ever.
For me, I treat my writing like something I carry along in my purse at all times. Something that is in and on my person. Also in and on my person is my Blackness and I will not ever divorce anything from my Blackness. Remember editors, being a person of color means we are often experts in how our skin, our lives etc intersect with the things we create. Being exposed to those intersections when you are not a person of color can be really fucking weird and scary. That’s okay.
I have faith in you.
Now some good news for me.
My interview that goes with my piece at SmokeLong is up. Here is a teaser:
The idea came from me watching booty shake videos on YouTube and dancing around at my desk, combined with a picture of this gorgeous woman in booty shorts and some little ankle boots. Not to mention my own love of women in summer and my special love of my fellow Queer Femme women of color.
Click to read all of it.
I’m going to be in the next issue of Randomly Accessed Poetics. It may be a bit before it’s available as the editor had a tragedy in the family.
That’s all for right now. I have work to do. Stories to edit/finish writing.
I’m wrestling with the ending for this cam girl story. I just don’t know what I want to do with it.