How To Republish Your Own Dang Book

Or: How To Rise Like A Phoenix From So Many Ashes

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Seriously, y’all.

Now that the Ariah relaunch has happened, I thought it might be cool to walk you through what that looked like, exactly, in case any of you out there need similar info/skills in the future times.

What Happened When I Heard My Press Was Going Under
Oh, you know. Irritation. Resignation. Worry. But it’s the new normal, right? You can’t let yourself dwell on it too much. I got the rights reversion language from them, and filed it away. Ariah (and the other books I had under contract with them) was mine again.

And that felt a bit like freedom, honestly. Terrifying, exhilarating freedom.

Deciding What To Do Next
I went into that a little here. The options were pretty clear-cut:

  • find a press willing to reprint Ariah
  • create a press and reprint Ariah
  • self-publish Ariah

Ultimately, I went with option 3, for now, because of timing and resources. Judging by word of mouth and some of the few stats I have at my disposal, there is some momentum and demand for Ariah out there currently. I was afraid if the book disappeared altogether that the word of mouth would dry up, the momentum would turn to stillness, and Ariah would entirely lose the audience its found. It felt, and still feels, important to keep the book out there. It is as entirely legitimate as it will ever be–publishing through a press is not going to make that more or less true–and the text has already been copy edited.

Ariah’s Second Edition – Nuts And Bolts
Ok, with that decision made, I started sketching out tasks to make it happen:

  • Cover – I have always loved the cover art the press secured for Ariah, so when they offered to let me purchase it, I jumped at the chance. Done.
  • Redo Digital File – I took the epub file the press gave me for promotion purposes when the book initially launched, and plopped it into Sigil. Sigil is a free program that I use to edit and manipulate epub files until they are *exactly* how I want them.
    • Change Front and Back Matter – I needed to make changes, definitely, to the copyright page. This is a second edition, since the publisher has changed. I took out some of the language my press had in the copyright page and added some other language. I reconfigured the Table of Contents. I removed some of the back matter and added other back matter, and made the links live.
    • Tweak Book Design – In Sigil, I tweaked some of the chapter titles and section headings to be more my aesthetic.
    • Upload to Kindle – When the Sigil file was done, I uploaded it to a different program, Calibre. In calibre, you can add a cover image. You can also convert the epub to other formats (like mobi). I took the newly created mobi file and uploaded it to Kindle. Bam: that’s your ebook.
  • Redo Print File – Also in Calibre, I converted the epub to a rtf file. I made whatever book design choices I wanted in Word–important note: you have to set paper size to 6×9 and set mirror margins to match the default CreateSpace size. I found this part to be extremely, weirdly, super fun. Then, I exported the word doc as a PDF, which I uploaded to CreateSpace.
    • Upload to CreateSpace – You’ll need to go through CreateSpace’s entire finicky checklist, and you’ll need to go through the cover design process there. This was…less fun, but very thorough. Once it’s all done, and reviewed, then you have a print-on-demand paperback!
  • Update Amazon Author Page – Go to AuthorCentral and add the new versions of the ebook and paperback to your bibliography. I had to add all the extra shizz to their pages (editorial reviews, about the author, etc).
    • I couldn’t get Amazon to link the new editions to the old editions, so the current reviews are trapped forever on the old edition’s page. *sad trombone*
      • although I have found a couple of ways to inquire about this (check out this and this if you wind up with similar issues). So hopefully this will be resolved soon!
  • Update Goodreads – Add the new ebook and paperback as new editions to your book’s goodreads page. If you do this, then your reviews from the old editions will carry over like magic.
    • If you run into trouble with that, the Goodreads librarian group is full of angels.

What’s Next?
The big question is What To Do With Those Other Books Zharmae Had Under Contract. I’ve shopped them around a little, but not much. But honestly, I don’t really know what’s next.

I do know it will work out. And I’ll be around. And it’ll be great! Stay tuned.

ARIAH has relaunched!

In the wake of Zharmae’s closing, I was faced with a choice:

  • take my book and go quietly into the night, shopping it around as a possible reprint
  • relaunch it myself immediately

I’ve decided to do both things. I’ve put a couple of feelers out to people who might be interested in reprinting Ariah–people with resources and reach I don’t have alone–but in the meantime, this little book has grown legs!

There are readers who would like to buy it in the interim, in both ebook and paperbook formats, and it feels not super cool to keep Ariah out of circulation just because when it takes not a terrible amount of effort to put it back in circulation.

So: Ariah is available, as a second edition, via Amazon in both print and digital formats. One day there might be yet a third edition, if any of those feelers pan out, but maybe not, so what is there to lose really?

Psst – there is a giveaway happening right now through my newsletter. You can sign up for the newsletter mailing list here, if you haven’t already, and enter the giveaway here.

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2nd Edition Ebook | 2nd Edition Print

The second edition has no story or grammatical changes in the text compared to the first edition. Really, the only change is that the first edition was published by Zharmae, and this edition is published by me, and thus they have different ISBNs. I did take the opportunity to make some slight differences to layout and book design, but again, the book does not have any additional content, so if you already have a copy of Ariah, I can’t really tell you in good conscience to pick up a copy of the second edition (unless you’re like OMG I MUST SUPPORT B IN EVERYTHING THEY DO in which case…thank you! You’re very sweet and encouraging!!).

B

A Fresh Start

Sometimes you get an email and it’s like

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And then you’re like

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So here’s what happened: my press, Zharmae, is folding after five years of putting out books. They’ll be shuttered at the end of the month.

That’s ok! That happens. It’s tough out there for presses–even the big ones.

The open question is what this means for me. In the short term, rights to Ariah and the not-yet-published A Tale of Rebellion series have reverted back to me. I am without an agent. So, basically, I have books in hand and many options.

The idea of getting back out there and subbing all over again is fearsome, but it’s also invigorating. Fresh starts are…well, shit, they are fresh if nothing else. This news comes at a time of a lot of general transitions in my life,* and while not necessarily unwelcome, it is has given me pause. It’s a moment to slow down for a second and figure out what I want and don’t want in my writing life.

In any case, stay tuned. I’m not going anywhere. That much I know for sure.


*Day job transitions, kiddo just started kindergarten, just a whole lot of stuff flipping over at once. Things are hectic.

 

Disrupting Publishing: 12/15/2015

It’s that time again: that time every week where I round up links to articles written by marginalized people pushing back against oppression in publishing. I’m aggregated as many marginalized voices as possible from as many vectors as possible, and the more intersectional the better. As always if you’ve read something I missed please link it in the comments.


“Twinja Book Reviews 3rd Annual Diversity Month Day Nine: Interview with Constance Burris” 

Right now, I feel like the message for diverse books is being misinterpreted. Some of the people who hear the call for diverse books are feeling like they should be the ones writing diverse books. But some of these people should just be uplifting and promoting the works of diverse authors who write diverse books.

Some folks are try their best to write to the trends but sometimes we need to take a step back. For example, I am intrigued by reading stories where the lead is gay. But that doesn’t mean I should write a story with a gay main character. It also doesn’t mean I shouldn’t. I just need to check my motives.

 

“Why I Chose To Write Publicly About Anxiety” by Kameron Hurley

All this said, and as much as I want to encourage others to take care of themselves, it also struck me how much of a privilege mental health is. The reality is that even with insurance, the costs of monthly meds on top of the actual drugs I need to stay alive is not very cheap. If I’d done this ten years ago, it would have been seriously financially difficult. Not to mention getting the time off to go to appointments, and actually getting in to see a doctor (I had to wait three months! Fuck). I’ve harped on our broken healthcare industry before, but if we want to have a sane and compassionate society, we must have equal access to care for people no matter their financial situation, and that’s still not possible in this country. It’s no wonder so many with anxiety just pick up cheap liquor instead.

 

“A Pledge for SF/F Conventions Accessibility” by Lynne, Michael, and Caitlin at Uncanny Magazine

Accessibility is not PC Bullshit. It is the law in the United States, and it has been for 25 years.

We can and should do better.

All members of a convention should be treated with dignity.

 

“The Writing Class” by Jaswinder Bolina for The Poetry Foundation

Graduate school endorses the idea that we are rare and recruited for our talents, but the more accurate statement might be that we are rare only because we have access to graduate school.

Guest Post: Navigating the Literary World With Bias by Guinevere Thomas

I’m thrilled to have a guest post by Guin Thomas! Guin is one half of the Twinjas, who write as G.L. Thomas. Their debut, The Mark of Nobawas pretty darn great and you should totally check it out.

About Guin
Guinevere Thomas is one half of Twinja Book Reviews, a book blog that celebrates diversity in books by day, and slays ninjas by night. Diversity is her strong point. Procrastination is her weak point. Chat books with her on Twitter @dos_twinjas where she joins her partner in crime to tweet about diversity in books and media. Be sure to visit her official site www.gltomas.net


You learn a lot about yourself when you’re put in a room where you’re the only person that looks or is like you. You try to be strong. You try to get through it as unaffected as those around you. But nothing tests your strength more than a situation like that when you come from a marginalized group.

I’m reminded of an event I went to last year. It was a grassroots blogger conference celebrating children’s and YA literature. Their theme was diversity, so that aspect brought it to life, so even though I was in a foreign place, I was in an element I was comfortable in.

I remind myself of a moment when a prolific self published author spoke about how women who weren’t of color reviewed her books. This particular author writes amazing books for children. I don’t think they appeal to every demographic, but they appeal to the demographic most important to her. Young, Black and inner-city.

I think it’s been said by Malinda Lo before (in a four part essay no less), about the perception of books that are inclusive, when they’re reviewed by groups that don’t understand them. The author at the conference wished that when bloggers reviewed books, they admitted their biases in the reviews.

We all have it. Bias. It’s not always a bad thing to have bias, or at least for me it isn’t. When I review a book, I feel inclined to state where I’m coming from. When I write, I feel inclined to state where I’m coming from. I do this because I think it’s important to understand that I may not always get something. I may not be meant to. I may not always be a target audience for something, and that’s ok.

To this day, I still don’t understand a lot of experiences my boyfriend has. He is the epitome of White privilege. Male, cis, straight, abled, White. Hell, he’s even blue-eyed and blond haired. I’m not saying we’re an awkward fit, but our experiences and biases are way different. He can’t turn on a tv without something being geared toward him. Advertisement, media, opportunities. In the United States, everything is made for him. He didn’t grow up rich, but he benefits from all the things that I don’t.

So he can’t always see the issues that other marginalized groups face. People of color learn about race a lot quicker than White people. Queer people learn about homophobia a lot quicker than straight people (as well as people of different genders learning sooner than cisgender). People with disabilities learn about Ableism much quicker, and to be honest the list can keep going on. I speak on the level of a person of color because that’s the identity that I feel the strongest toward.

I don’t want to come down on White people, but as a person of color, I just don’t have the power to combat racism. I can only make my voice heard, which is still a powerful tool. But I still fall under one of the most brutalized, taken advantage of, misinterpreted groups since the Americas were colonized. My eyes, my bias, will always have that feeling of being powerless. You can disagree. But consider this.

While this counts for all marginalized groups, I see it more through the eyes of a person of color. We don’t have real power to protect ourselves. Our image, our lives, our children, our communities…

A Black person never dies in this country without being dragged through the dirt weeks after their death. There are a lot of people who still don’t see that Black Lives Matter comes from pain, and that many feel voicing our pain isn’t enough to people. No one has ever disagreed and said All lives didn’t matter, but BLM is a movement that’s just trying to voice, that we don’t feel ours do in comparison. People still need to view a video of a teenager getting gun down for our pain to feel real to people. Reasons like that make us feel like we need receipts of our pain to matter.

What does this have to do with books? Everything. We have so few effective tools to teach children. We’re living in a world that’s greatly affected by our generation before it. -Isms were a norm for them, so we inherit it. Sometimes our most memorable teachers are loved ones.

I didn’t read diversely much as a kid. As a kid I was into R.L. Stine, and as a preteen I was a Stephen King nut (no one ever believes me. But at 11, I never slept). Whatever I learned about culture different from mine was in a book. It was before the internet, so books were the only interesting, tasteful source of literature there was (I was also a teeny bopper, and loved teen magazines. Not very sophisticated). No one looked like me, and the ones that did were never Cuban, or had more than a few lines, but I was content with scraps for representation.

This is where I show my hood side, but I just gotta quote Nicki Minaj right quick.

“You’re in videos with black men, and you’re bringing out black women on your stages, but you don’t want to know how black women feel about something that’s so important? Come on, you can’t want the good without the bad. If you want to enjoy our culture and our lifestyle, bond with us, dance with us, have fun with us, twerk with us, rap with us, then you should also want to know what affects us, what is bothering us, what we feel is unfair to us. You shouldn’t not want to know that.”

And I apply that to every marginalization I don’t belong to. I’m learning to be a better ally. I think I make mistakes as an ally sometimes. In the past, I’ve wanted change so bad, I may have spoke in spaces that would’ve been better coming from someone who knew better than me, experienced it for themselves, instead of me joining in to speak. I’ve learned to amplify voices when it’s not my conversation to have, and have my seat when it’s time to be silent.

I’m not disabled, I’m not a religion that receives heavy scrutiny. I’m American born, I’m cisgender. I realize this isn’t a lot of privilege, but it’s still privilege. For voices that often get silenced in the conversation about inclusion, I should want to know what affects them in their community. I want to know how life treats them, what bothers them, I need to know the good and the bad.

I learned the most about inclusion and diversity in books as an adult. When it’s done wrong, when it’s done right, who should do it, who should steer clear. A lot of this is gray for me. I want silenced voices to be at the forefront, and receiving credit in the ways they’re often ignored. But I also want to still matter in lit where it’s not from a marginalized group too. This has been said so many times, most people can recite it verbatim, but kids who are White, straight, cis, abled, the whole she-bang, they need to see us, before we become a hashtag.

Our experiences shape whatever biases we have. But inclusion in books is a small step toward expanding our limited thinking. I remember being at Barnes & Noble and overhearing two sisters requesting a book they’d read in school about a little Black girl. And I was even more floored at the effort the mother was making to find them this book. It wasn’t just a book with a scattered diversity here and there. It was a Black girl their age, front and center, with a story different from theirs, that they were prepared to read over and over again.

You can’t tell me that’s not a good start…

Disrupting Publishing: 12/8/2015

It’s that time again: that time every week where I round up links to articles written by marginalized people pushing back against oppression in publishing. I’m aggregated as many marginalized voices as possible from as many vectors as possible, and the more intersectional the better. As always if you’ve read something I missed please link it in the comments.


“‘Where are the brown people?’: authors slam lack of diversity in UK publishing” by Alison Flood for The Guardian

“In publishing circles, I’m often the only person of colour in a room and I’m made to feel very aware of that. If we are to tackle this problem, people like me need to feel welcome,” Shukla said. “Everyone keeps saying ‘I am not prejudiced, or racist’, but they won’t say it is my responsibility as well to try and do better.”

 

“Dear Philip Nel: Some Questions about WAS THE CAT IN THE HAT BLACK: THE HIDDEN RACISM OF CHILDREN’S LITERATURE AND WHY WE NEED DIVERSE BOOKS” by Deb Reese at American Indians in Children’s Literature

You know We Need Diverse Books is trademarked, right? And you know that the organization itself is a grass roots effort comprised largely of people of color who object to the ways that structural racism consistently rewards white, and specifically white males, for the work they do–over the work of people of marginalized communities, right? Are you in conversation with anyone at WNDB about your book, and/or have you had conversations with anyone there about using that phrase in the title of your book?

I hope so, because if not, you might be rendering them invisible and thereby contributing to “invisibility as a form of racism.”

 

The Twinjas are hosting their 3rd annual Diversity month on their blog right now! Interviews with diverse creators/authors are going up every couple of days, and it’s a goldmine of thoughts and reflections on the state of writing and publishing and intersectionality, so I cannot recommend checking it out highly enough!

 

“Fandom and the Intersection of Feminism and Race” at Full-Color Fantasy

So if you instinctively ask why a Black woman can’t just be strong or get upset if she is “reduced to a love interest,” allowed the kind of romantic storyline you take for granted and spit on, the answer is: Your brand of feminism doesn’t apply here.

And, you know, that doesn’t negate that brand of feminism. Intersectionality (of all kinds) asks you to look at feminism as something that is complex, not a set of one-size-fits-all rules.

 

Disrupting Publishing Linkspam: 11/3/2015

It’s that time again: that time every week where I round up links to articles written by marginalized people pushing back against oppression in publishing. I’m aggregated as many marginalized voices as possible from as many vectors as possible, and the more intersectional the better. As always if you’ve read something I missed please link it in the comments.


“Equity in Publishing: What Should Editors Be Doing?” by Antonio Aiello for PEN

ALEXANDER CHEE: I guess I’m still stuck on this “white nepotism,” “brown nepotism” idea Sherman Alexie has left us with—in which he mistakes white supremacy for nepotism, and the work to undo it for another kind of nepotism. I am still trying to see the good in what Alexie has done, but I can only think that while he has indeed defended his choices, and perhaps, the way those choices were made, he has done so at the cost of approximately 100 years of writing and activism by Asian American writers, who have, at sometimes considerable social and professional cost, worked to pry open even a little of the white Potemkin village that is contemporary American publishing.

Poet Gregory Pardlo: ‘I won the Pulitzer: why am I invisible?’ by Angela Chen for The Guardian

“One of the things I run into surprisingly often is people saying to me, ‘I’ve never heard of you before,’” says poet Gregory Pardlo. “Yet I’ve been publishing in ‘mainstream’ journals and my book won that prize, so what is it that is making me invisible? It’s not the work and it’s not the publishing credits.”

“This Is Getting Old” by Katherine Locke

Bird, unlike Breslin, isn’t anti-Semitic. Just determinedly tonedeaf about marginalized people’s hurt and their right to protect themselves and express the hurt at the same time. But suggesting that marginalized people must be hurt, must continue to be hurt, must make themselves open to hurt in order to converse is cruel, unnecessary, and wrong.

“12 Fundamentals of Writing ‘The Other’ (And The Self)” by Daniel Jose Older for Buzzfeed

To write, we must listen. To listen, we must shut up. And this isn’t the simple kind of listening, where you’re waiting for them to finish what they can say so you can jump in real quick with your point. Really, have a seat, take a deep breath, and listen to what people around you are saying. Listen to yourself, your quiet self. To your doubts and fears, the things you don’t want to admit. Listen to the things folks say that make you uncomfortable. Sit with that discomfort.

Disrupting Publishing Linkspam: 10/27/2015

It’s that time again: that time every week where I round up links to articles written by marginalized people pushing back against oppression in publishing. I’m aggregated as many marginalized voices as possible from as many vectors as possible, and the more intersectional the better. As always if you’ve read something I missed please link it in the comments.


“The ‘Anyone Can Write’ Argument in Laura Amy Schlitz’s THE HIRED GIRL” by Debbie Reese

Is Schlitz–through her characters–pushing against the growing call for diversity of authors? I think so, and, I think it is an overt move on the part of Schlitz, her editor, and her publishing house.

“Accuracy or Bias: On Prejudicial Characters in Children’s Literature and Beyond” by Justina Ireland for Book Riot

It doesn’t matter that this book may be offensive to Jewish or Native people. As long as it satisfies the majority, in this case a white, Christian audience, it must be “quality.” The book is one more microaggression against readers that fall outside of the imagined audience, and the conversation surrounding the book further marginalizes these groups because it makes very clear that their opinion is inconsequential. A book that is offensive to them can still be considered award worthy.

The PW Publishing Industry Salary Survey 2015: A Younger Workforce, Still Predominantly White

“Same Old Script” by Alisha Harris at Slate

A Writers’ Guild of America report released earlier this year noted that staff employment for people of color actually decreased between the 2011–12 season and 2013–14 season, from a peak of 15.6 percent to 13.7 percent. The number of executive producers of color also decreased in those seasons, from 7.8 percent to 5.5 percent. While the 2014–15 season may have seen those numbers increase thanks to the addition of a few shows with diverse casts, such sharp declines demonstrate how tenuous progress in Hollywood can be.

The Rhimes effect onscreen is real. But can the remarkable diversity in those few writers’ rooms spread to shows across the television landscape?

Girl Monsters: Sofia Samatar interviews Sarah McCarry

I want to ask you about the cover of About a Girl—because isn’t this the first mass-market YA cover to show two girls kissing??

It’s the first cover of a YA novel published by a Big 5 publisher (Big 4 now? I can’t keep track) to feature two girls kissing, yes! It came about because I am a belligerent pest, is the short version of the story. I am still delighted about that.

“Sleeps With Monsters: Strong Female Characters and the Double Standard” by Liz Bourke for Tor.com

But the double standard of content, the double standard of criticism applied, bothers me really quite fundamentally. We fall into the error of really rather relentlessly applying criticism to female characters. They’re too domestic! They aren’t domestic enough! They have too little agency! Or too much, having unbelievably few constraints on their choices! They’re too violent, too shallow, too brittle. They’re too gentle, too generous, too forgiving, too soft. They’re insufficiently maternal, or too much so. They’re too independent! They’re not independent enough!

Disrupting Publishing Linkspam: 10/20/2015

It’s that time again: that time every week where I round up links to articles written by marginalized people pushing back against oppression in publishing. I’m aggregated as many marginalized voices as possible from as many vectors as possible, and the more intersectional the better. As always if you’ve read something I missed please link it in the comments.


“I Sought Solace On My Bookshelf” by Daniel Jose Older for Buzzfeed

On Nov. 19, the night before police killed unarmed Akai Gurley in a Brooklyn stairwell, Daniel Handler made his racist watermelon quip toward Jacqueline Woodson as he presented her with a National Book Award. It was interpersonal anti-blackness that led him to make such a statement. Institutional anti-blackness had his back.

“‘Agendas’ in Fiction” by Kayla Whaley

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An Interview with Effie Brown about Project Greenlight

Why did you argue with Damon?

“I had no choice really. I’ve been black and a woman all my life. I have worked in this business for 20 years. I’m 43. It was one of those things. Literally in that moment, was I going to risk public humiliation, bringing up this opinion, or deal with shame and excuses: ‘You let that go by?’ That’s a big responsibility. I was more afraid of my mother: ‘That’s how we raised you and sacrificed, that’s it? When the time was for you to stand and be counted?’ That’s all that went thorough my head: damned if I was going to do that.

“Stories, Culture, and Conversation: An Interview with Roshani Chokshi and Yukimi Ogawa” by Catherine Krahe in Strange Horizons

I remember receiving a rejection that cut my heart to the quick because the editor said she just “didn’t know where the story would live.” And I couldn’t tell whether that referred to the writing and the editor’s belief that it didn’t fit the genre or whether the diverse content made the story a jarring choice compared to the pieces she acquired.

Disrupting Publishing Linkspam: 10/13/2015

It’s that time again: that time every week where I round up links to articles written by marginalized people pushing back against oppression in publishing. I’m aggregated as many marginalized voices as possible from as many vectors as possible, and the more intersectional the better. As always if you’ve read something I missed please link it in the comments.


“Reasons I Checked Out Of the Diversity Discussion Du Jour” by Awitin Mo

3. And this is just ranting, of course, because I’m afraid
and unwilling to engage, won’t give people a chance
to prove the rightness of their positions, the purity of their intent.

Besides, this haze of getting by, forgetting and being forgotten

“On Writing Diverse Characters…And Moving Past Passive Aggression” by Suleikha Snyder

Yeah, that’s what I do. And that’s what exhausts me, what makes many label me as histrionic or one of those Angry Women of Color who doesn’t want white people writing diverse books. Inevitably, one way or another, the hurtful book will still continue to hurt me. I will be the Bad Guy. Sure, sometimes it can be fun, even vindicating, to be the Bad Guy. But, mostly, it eats at you. Because you know that calling out race-fail is ultimately worse than writing something racist. That’s the lesson we’re taught. Being a whistleblower often means you get the blowback.

“Why The Mikado is Still Problematic: Cultural Appropriation 101” by Desdemona Chiang at HowlRound

The truth is, no one can make anyone do anything. As long as there’s a privileged person who feels immune and entitled to produce The Mikado or any other kind of work that marginalizes others, those works will live on until the social climate changes.

For the record, I don’t think that hiring Asian people makes The Mikado OK. In my opinion, the show was born out of a fetishistic impulse that reduces the Japanese culture to an object of curiosity, and I don’t think that can be validated or corrected by “appropriate casting” without serious reconstructive dramaturgy.

“The Numbers So Far” at the Cooperative Children’s Book Center Blog

Meg Rosoff Throwdown Roundup

“Sunday Morning Reads” by Edi Campbell

I do need to read about a queer black boy to read about marginalized people. I doneed the children’s book world to be much more literal about what, about who needs to be represented and I need that more than I need to read about self absorbed middle class white kids in apocalyptic England.

I need mirrors like Jeremiah Nebula to remind me that I can face my fears. I need him to remind me how fearfully white the world is and if I need this book as my mirror, then my queer little black boys need books to prop themselves on it like a crutch.

“This Is How The Industry Lives Now: Five Signs You Might Be Suffering From White Privilege” by Camryn Garrett

2. “There are thousands of books:”Where? Do you know any of them? Do you know that there are thousands of books about white people, and yet, we’re still expected to read them? In the past, white books were all that were offered. Racial minorities are just beginning to have their stories told. Yes, there have been many success stories, but for each of those, there are about ten authors being shot down.
PS: Stories about racial minorities written by white people don’t count.

This is how I live now. I sit knee-to-knee with other castoffs from the accepted literary status quo. We compare the titles where we’ve seen glimpses of ourselves, quick darts of a reflection across the Mirror of Erised, never seen full-face, never given a mouth beneath the wide, hungry eyes.