Please SAVE THE DATE(S) for October 4th - 17th for A More Diverse Universe! These are the weeks directly after Banned Books Week in the United States, which I think works nicely. Hopefully, you can read a book that has been challenged during Banned Books Week and then write it up for review during A More Diverse Universe.
This is the third year that I'm hosting A More Diverse Universe. The criteria for participating are the same as they were last year:
- Read and review one book
- Written by a person of color
- During the first two weeks of October (October 4th-17th)
That's all! SO EASY, right? It's what you'd probably do, anyway, right? It's basically the lowest bar for participation of any reading challenge you've ever participated in, right? In which case, there's really no excuse to not sign up, right?
I don't think I can say much more about the many reasons that exist for reading diversely than I have already said before. Hopefully I don't need to convince anyone. But if I do, try me. I am happy to engage in the discussion as privately or as publicly as you would like. The main point I'd like to make is:
Reading diversely is important because we live in a global world. Period. If you read books only by white authors, you are limiting yourself to less than 30% of the world's experience of race and culture. If you read books only by Christian authors, you are limiting yourself to only about 33% of the world's experience of religion. If you read books only by authors in developed countries, you are limiting yourself to a very privileged view of what the world has to offer you. If you read books that focus only on Western thought, history, and philosophy, you are missing out on many rich and varied traditions and worldviews that have informed and continue to enrich the way we view the world today.
And, to continue reiterating my own points, I would like to make super-duper, extremely clear that reading diversely is not difficult. IT WILL NOT LIMIT YOUR READING SELECTIONS. This I promise you. If you take nothing else away from this post, please remember this:
Reading diversely may require you to change your book-finding habits. It ABSOLUTELY does not require you to change your book reading habits.
Authors of diverse backgrounds write books in every genre, from science to romance, from urban fantasy to graphic memoirs. It may take you a little longer to find these books as they don't always get the same amount of hype and press, but you absolutely can find them.
Still feel intimidated and want some help? I'm here for ya. Seriously, I would like to make this as easy as possible for you and all your friends and all the world to participate, so here's what I suggest:
- You can check out the #Diversiverse tab on this blog, which has EVERY SINGLE REVIEW from A More Diverse Universe since the event started in 2012. Find your favorite blogger and see what s/he recommends you to read.
- If you click on the #diversiverse label here on this blog, you will find even more books that qualify for the A More Diverse Universe tour that I read and reviewed.
- I have a list of links in this post that direct you to different websites and public library lists that focus on reading diversely.
- Last year, I did a #diversiverse deep-dive of suggestions for two genres, non-fiction and historical fiction. Check out the comments section for even more suggestions.
So one has to be a blogger to participate?ReplyDelete
Nope, you can link to your review anywhere on the web! Most people who participate are bloggers, but there are also people who review on GoodReads or Amazon or YouTube. And if none of those options work, I am happy to have a guest post on my blog during the two weeks, too, by anyone who would like to write one.Delete
That's doable and great. Signing up now :-)Delete
Looking forward to doing this again this year!ReplyDelete
I'm glad you're able to participate again!Delete
This looks interesting! Definitely participating. :)ReplyDelete
I am signing up again and will see what my library can offer :)ReplyDelete
And as always I just read a book that would have fit
I am sad that your library has not gotten more diverse over the past three years, but I hope if you keep pushing them, they'll eventually cave and order ALL the books.Delete
The thing is they might have lots, but the time it would take me to go through lists of names 0_0 But I did go through a list on goodreads, found some, but ended up wanting to read this fantasy book that I got as a freebie :)Delete
So glad to be doing this again. Thanks for hosting and raising awareness of book that celebrate diversity.ReplyDelete
You'll be doing the same thing when you participate and post! Thanks for spreading the word.Delete
I've posted announcements about this on tumblr, facebook, and my blog where I also listed some books I've read that qualify along with review links - https://theillustratedpage.wordpress.com/2015/08/03/announcing-2015-a-more-diverse-universe/ReplyDelete
Thank you so much for doing this again!
Wow, Sarah, thanks very much - I appreciate the help in getting the word out!Delete
Sounds such like a smashing challenge, and there's been a book sitting on my shelf for far too long. This will be an ideal opportunity to finally getting around to reading it.ReplyDelete
Whoops! Unwanted "such" crept in there!Delete
I understood what you meant :-)Delete
I didn't realise you'd changed it to all genres (instead of just speculative)! I am definitely in...depending on how I feel in October, I might do a post a day featuring various types of books, since I still aim for 50% POC in my fiction reading and 33% in my nonfiction, so at this point I know lots of authors. Hmmm.ReplyDelete
YES. DO IT. I tried to do some of that last year, but only got around to two posts about historical fiction and non-fiction. Oh, life. But I love your compendium posts, so I hope you do it!Delete
(Also, once you've been reading diversely for several years, you'd think finding new books/authors would get easier. But it actually gets *harder*, because you've read a lot of the easily found ones. Particularly in nonfiction. *sigh*)ReplyDelete
Oh, I know! That is why I tried to find historical fiction and non-fiction last year that were not typical diverse books about "the immigrant experience." Because those books are just very repetitive.Delete
I do think it gets easier to find fiction, though. Perhaps because there is more on offer (yay!), and perhaps because you know better where to look and who to follow.
I *love* this event.ReplyDelete
Signed up! Now for the books .....ReplyDelete
I've always wanted to sign up every year but managed to get side-tracked by school and other things. Not this time!ReplyDelete
This event has certainly increased my awareness and I can't wait to participate again this year. :) Thanks for continually hosting Aarti!ReplyDelete
Totally in. And I can say quite confidently that events like this one over the past few years have encouraged me to always look for more diverse authors, both for my personal reading and for selecting new books at the library where I work.ReplyDelete
I always forget you changed it to include more than SF! This is what happens when you get old. I have a new Tananarive Due book from Netgalley that I can read. And lots of stuff I saved for RIP Challenge so I'm set!ReplyDelete
I'm signed up again and really looking forward to it. I'll do some signal boosting along the way too!ReplyDelete
You know to count me in!ReplyDelete
I'm all signed up! Hopefully, I won't be baby-swamped when this event is going on. But I can read a bunch of qualifying books in the meantime to hopefully avoid that problem.ReplyDelete
I had a blast doing this last year! Looking forward to doing it again!ReplyDelete
I'm in! I was just thinking that it's early, but the earlier the better :) Thanks Aarti!ReplyDelete
Excited to participate in this! So glad I saw it on Twitter. -LailaReplyDelete
Hoping to have my students do this as wellReplyDelete
Excited to join my first Reading Challenge!ReplyDelete
This is my first time to join you. I have been reading diverse books for awhile but to read more is even better!ReplyDelete
Naila Moon, Hostess, #KLBH
I am thrilled to participate! I am a Science Fiction writer, and after all the disgusting stuff that went down at the Hugos this year, it is more vital than ever to champion diverse voices in spec fic.ReplyDelete
My blog is Excavating the Relic.
I came across the link to this challenge accidentally and I'm glad I did, I'll be happy to participate. My blog/podcast is about Jewish books, music, film and web. I can certainly find a book by a person of color that also has Jewish content - but I'm curious about whether you are including other "diverse" groups (religion, disability, gender identity, etc) or only diversifying by skin color.ReplyDelete
Hi Heidi- I am so glad serendipity led you here! To qualify for #diversiverse, yes, the book has to be by a POC author. There are a lot of ways to define diversity, and there are problems with every definition, but that is the one we are going with for this challenge.Delete
Hi! I'd just like to check - I primarily read graphic novels and manga, would that still count for this? Or would you prefer this project to focus on prose? (I'm going to do it either way, it's just a matter of selecting!)ReplyDelete
Graphic novels and manga absolutely qualify!Delete
Oh excellent, thank you very much!ReplyDelete
Stumbled upon this from The Readers podcast. Love this!ReplyDelete
This will be my first time participating as I just heard about this from The Readers podcast and I JUST created a new book blog this month! I am excited and will spread the word!ReplyDelete
So glad I found out about this before it was too late!ReplyDelete
I was thrilled to take part in the inaugural Diversiverse, and so happy to report I'm back this year! I'll be reading Daniel José Older's Shadowshaper, and a second book if time permits. Thanks again for hosting this immensely important reading initiative, Aarti!ReplyDelete
It's my first time taking part and this totally lines up with my intentions for my blog - to promote ALL writers, be they orange, green or purple-people-eaters, pastafarians or solipsists, straight-bent-zigzag, published or indie.ReplyDelete
Links to my reviews:
1. The Book Of Memory by Petinah Gappah, about an albino Zimbabwean woman who awaits execution for murdering the white man her parents sold her to as a girl. http://literogo.com/2015/10/01/the-book-of-memory-by-petina-gappah/
(I reviewed it on October 1st, before I was aware of the challenge, but I'd love to submit it anyway, and it's a damn good book)
2. Coffee Will Make You Black, by April Sinclair. Originally published in the 1990s, it is a coming of age story about an African American girl in the 1960s. Involves sex, racism, LGBTQI themes. May be triggering for some underage sexual content.
I've added the #diversiverse tag to those reviews and will continue to tag relevant books throughout the event.
Thanks for hosting!
Yay! I made it! Down to the wire though. Here is my post: http://thefridayfriends.blogspot.com/2015/10/a-more-diverse-universe.htmlReplyDelete
Thanks for hosting!