Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Diversity Reading

For the last couple years I've had a personal reading resolution to expand my horizons beyond white US writers.* Typically I have to make an effort which is FINE. I mean the goal is to get to the point where I don't have to make such an effort, it just happens but hey, till then, I'll try to make a conscious effort.

Because I also track my stats each month,
Still trying for that high-five
when I do get books that fit the resolution criteria I try to spread the reading of them out. Basically, I don't trust that I'm going to read more than 1 resolution book in a given month, so if I get a couple books by say POC authors, I better not read them all this month or else next month my resolution reads will be pathetic.

As I mentioned, I recently went on a book buying binge. I added a couple more books, including Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng and was just approved for Don't Touch My Hair by Phoebe Robinson. So I was thinking out of my newest acquisitions, what should I read next? Right now I'm reading Second Hand Souls by Christopher Moore, which meets zero of the criteria so I wanted to make sure whatever I read next will count towards my goals. And then I realized something: every book I recently acquired does.
Almost all of the latest books, China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan, Tales of Burning Love by Louise Erdrich, and the two I listed above are all by POC authors. The only other recent addition is The Cuckoo's Calling, which while not a POC author technically does count since the author isn't from the US.
Obviously this doesn't mean I'm done focusing on my resolution reads or that I can stop making a conscious effort about what I'm picking up. But it does mean that I'm moving in the right direction.

*Those are the primary criteria, though there's also books that are translation (which is along the same lines, focusing on diversification) and books published before 2000 (which really just seems like something that should be easy and I fail at it constantly. I also make less of an effort to hit it but really, shouldn't be this hard).