The book blogosphere is pretty vast and deep, and many would say it’s its own world. I am proud and happy to be able to be apart of a great environment where I can share my passion of books and literature. Like all things great, there are flaws that do come with it. One of them being the lack of voices from people of color. I’m not saying there aren’t minority voices out there in the book blogging world, they just aren’t as prevalent. Every voice is important to hear no matter the race or religion.
When I first broke into book blogging, many people outside of book blogging thought it was “interesting” or strange for a black girl to start a book blog. Yes, hello, we (black girls) read too! I definitely didn’t see a lot of black girls or guys blogging or vlogging about books, but it didn’t dissuade me. Instead, I was encouraged to share my voice and opinions on the books I read. I have been a huge reader for all of my life, and what better way to share your thoughts with others than to start a blog?
Read. Read. Read. Just don’t read one type of book. Read different books by various authors so that you develop different style.
While in university, I majored in English Literature and minored in Linguistics, and even there, there weren’t many brown people. I get it, there are TONS of dead white male authors that are studied in literature. When involved in literary discourse, the voices are limited to a certain scope. Even when I took an African American literature class, there were two black students including myself. Our voices and opinions are needed desperately in the literary world. Whether it’s through writing, blogging, illustrating, criticism, or teaching, our thoughts matter and are important. I love when I hear a black person brushing up on their classics or can engage in a stimulating discussion about a book or literary theory. I just want to raise a perpetual fist in the air and shout “YES!” at the top of my lungs.
When it comes to book blogging, I want to see more diverse voices behind the blogs. It’s not difficult to break into the book blogging “scene” and so far it’s been a wonderful experience. Blogging is something that can take up as much time as you want, so you can choose your pace. Black girls or guys reading isn’t “strange” or “weird”, it’s empowering which is why I encourage anyone to give it a try! We can’t make waves unless we’re willing to get wet. If you’re thinking about blogging and want some advice, or just want to talk about books, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Also if you know of any people of color book bloggers, keep encouraging them. Do you have a favorite book blogger and/or blog? If so, let me know!
I believe we need more culturally diverse books – about disabled characters, though not about their disability, about people with different sexual orientations, or a boy who is a cross-dresser. We need to reflect the diversity of our society.