Another day, another hot ass mess.
I’m really sick of publishing. Like. Beyond sick. We’re not supposed to say that, right? As writers, we’re supposed to be striving and sacrificing all we have to achieve The Dream, to get The Call. And usually that involves swallowing our tongues when it comes to critiquing the heaping helpings of utter bullshite this industry subjects us to daily.
We’re in the midst of a civil rights crisis the likes of which hasn’t been seen in the U.S. since the mid-20th century, and how does publishing address that? Reprint a racist-ass book from 1997.
What, you thought they’d put funds towards BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) writers? Nah, that’d be too much like right.
It’s the most obvious of cash grabs. They see the bestseller list and think, “What do these books have in common? Aha! Black characters!” Then they dig into the midlist for a story that harms and dehumanizes its readers while enriching its white author.
They really think we can’t see the jig.
Even though we say over and over again that diversity and inclusion isn’t a trend or a genre, publishing insists on trying to fashion it into just that, all the while disenfranchising BIPOC writers.
It’s annoying and frustrating and just so damn ridiculous. Books like THE HATE U GIVE, DEAR MARTIN, and TYLER JOHNSON WAS HERE, can’t be duplicated by non-Black authors just adding Negroes to any old story. Your “issue” book full of stereotypes isn’t edgy, it’s violent. Some stories just aren’t for you to tell. Y’all know this to be true but you just hate hearing the word “no.”
I don’t have the solution. If I did, I’d probably be a lot wealthier. I’d certainly be published. I certainly wouldn’t be watching people far less talented and a great deal paler than me flourishing on the basis of poorly-crafted work.
If I come off bitter, I’m not even sorry. I’m too exhausted to fake being happy.