I am thrilled as shit, pleased as punch, and possibly several other similes to have Constance Burris as my guest today. She, like myself, shares a love of diversity in fiction and she, like myself, takes it upon herself to write more books with diverse characters. She also reads them, which is something I did back when I read regularly (I'm getting back to it, promise...). So I wanted to hear what she had to say about her experiences with diversity in fiction.
Enough of me gabbing, though: here's Constance Burris!
|$3.99 on Amazon!|
I've been making an increased effort to read diversely for the past three months. Here is what I learned:
1. It's addictive. If I'm reading the same race, sex, gender, age, or disability twice in a row, I get super sad and I start stalking book review blogs for my diversity fix, which leads me to my next point...
2. The importance of diverse book reviewers. A suburbanite, who may only see black people on the 10 o'clock news or by watching slave movies with white saviors, might not be able to relate to a book about black teens living in the middle of Harlem. I'm not saying you have to be black to enjoy reading books with black characters. Neither do you have to be gay to relate to gay characters. I’m just saying we need reviewers who read diverse books, so that when a book reviewer has the nerve to call a book ghetto simply because it’s filled with slang, we have five other reviews to give a different perspective.
3. I need to check my bias. I have to confess, diversity for me meant reading more books with black people, but after reading diversely for three months, my universe blew open. Diversity is so much more than race. It's sexuality, gender, disability, age and so forth.
Constance Burris is on a journey to take over the world through writing fantasy, horror, and science fiction. Her mission is to spread the love of speculative fiction to the masses. She is a proud card carrying blerd (black nerd), mother, and wife. When she is not writing and spending time with her family, she is working hard as an environmental engineer in Oklahoma City.
If you want to learn more about Constance, you can find her on Twitter, Facebook, and on her website. And, if you're looking for fiction with some more diversity, try checking out Coal (Everleaf Series #1), Ms. Burris debut novel!