January 20, 2014

Monday Pep Rally: Racial Diversity in YA



If you'll recall, we've changed up our format a little bit for these posts. Because we've all gotten so used to getting our thoughts down in 140 characters, we're taking the discussion to twitter! Every Monday, we'll be talking about our Pep Rally question on twitter and we'd love you to join in. Just keep an eye out for the #MisfitPepRally hashtag!

Happy Monday, Misfiteers! I'm actually coming to you from exotic Washington DC today, and given that it's Martin Luther King, Jr., Day, there's really only one topic to discuss.

Ta da - racial diversity in YA!

Is there enough of it? Nope. Are we getting more of it? Hopefully. Is there more we can do? Absofreakinglutely.

1. Support it with your wallets. That means buying books with main characters of color (bonus points if the covers feature said main characters) and buying books by people of color. So much of publishing is proving there's an audience, and the way to prove it is to be that audience.

2. Write diverse characters. Need some help doing your research? Fortunately, Misfit Marieke is one of the heads of a website, DiversifYA, that exists for just that! You can also check out Diversity in YA, run by Malinda Lo and Cindy Pon; the blog at Lee & Low Books, and plenty of other resources, including other diverse fiction.

3. Blog about it. Tweet about it. Get people excited about it. All these things are great ways to keep the discussion going and make sure it happens.

And now, since this is Monday Pep Rally, we have to ask:

How do you plan to expand racial diversity in YA? What are your favorite racially diverse YA titles that are already out there?  

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