I was following a twitter chat the other week about diversity in YA fiction…or the lack of it, to be more accurate. There were people calling for representation of different races, cultures, sexuality and so on.
I’m certainly guilty of writing through my own lens – white, hetero, able bodied. Yet unless we begin to imagine ourselves in someone else’s reality, I don’t believe we can really move forward for equality. I try to put myself in other people’s shoes as I encounter different situations every day, and most especially when I reflect on events such as those in Charleston and Tunisia. I’m sure we all do.
Why then do we shy away from attempting this in our writing?
Start small, gain confidence, grow.
I’m going to take the challenge I’ve set myself. Read ‘Fire’ [coming soon], and let me know how I’ve done with those first steps.