So, I wanted to tell you guys about this amazing collection that I’m lucky enough to be a part of, but one of the other authors in the boxed set wrote such a meaniful post about it, I asked her if I could share her words instead. So, here goes:
Original Post here: Link
[This is re-posted here with Tina Glasneck’s permission. Visit her website here: https://www.tinaglasneck.com/]
Why Representation Matters
by: Tina Glasneck
Have you read, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou? Therein is a little black girl that believes if she had blonde hair and blue eyes, everything would be different and okay.
I didn’t understand race for a long time – I grew up with friends of all colors and nationalities, but it wasn’t until my family relocated to the deep south that I came to understand that being black came with its own stigma.
I’ll never forget the day – I was riding with my grandmother as we headed to Pulaski, Tennessee, and as we rounded the courthouse, I watched men in sheets chant epithets and spew hate. I asked my grandmother about it, and she told me to ignore those fools. But what is known cannot be unknown or forgotten.
Only after this fierce and blatant experience was I forced to face that European beauty standards would dictate my own beauty. My lips and nose were considered too wide; my derriere to round; my laughter too robust; my hair too curly and kinky. I was supposed to cower in the background, and be okay with it, but I wasn’t. Instead, I sought to create my own path, and strengthened by the tenets of my faith, and family, and embraced by a high school where we were all eclectic, different and thriving on this difference, I pursued excellence. I tried out for plays; studied hard, acted, travelled, and never let anyone put me in a corner because of what they expected me to be like.
Luckily in the 80s, I grew up with television characters that reflected my world, such as The Cosby Show and A Different World, followed in the 90s by Family Matters. I saw families that reflected my own – these stories didn’t revolve around drugs, prostitution or any negative stereotype, but about families and the problems that they had to overcome.
Every kid is teased. Every kid has to make their way into adulthood, and having representation that goes beyond that of horrible tropes, as depicted in movies and by the media, the social prejudices can then be eradicated. If books and media didn’t provide a different take, I could have grown up thinking that the best I could become would have been a maid, a hooker, a strung out side chick, or even a drug dealer. The positive role models made it possible for me to reach higher, and to strive to become more. That’s why representation is important.
Diversity in pop culture and media are important. The media and entertainment industry play an important role in race relations, as many people only know of certain ethnicities based on the image as produced through Hollywood’s lenses. Stereotypes that are visually reinforced, and without basis. We’ve not yet moved to a society where all are embraced, but maybe this can be the beginning of it. Maybe through diverse fiction, and the telling of tales that move the masses, others can embrace stories that star cast members of differing ethnicities, genders and sexual orientations.
Just as a FYI, diverse fiction doesn’t mean that everything is about race relations or some huge historical struggle. A romance doesn’t have to be about race any more than a children’s cartoon. Were the Huxtables any less relatable because they were a black family?
Instead, this and representations of diverse mediums reflect the diverse community we are, as well as helps to build bridges – removing the sense of otherness, and instead recognizing that the stories we tell are those of the heart – the same boy meets girl love stories, travel adventures, war stories, heck, even horror. By building those bridges we help to eradicate the growing chasm of hate which we find ourselves wallowing in. So, instead of just deferring to a homogeneous or default representation in fiction, I’m happy to be part of a forthcoming boxed set that reflects the world in which I live.
My America is composed of several races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, and genders. And there is room in fiction for all of us.
Let’s embrace diverse fiction because we are living in a grand diverse world!
Today, help support diversity and representation, and grab your copy of this great set of full length stories!
A dangerously beautiful vision of unique worlds that’s sure to leave its mark.
Cross through the looking glass into Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, and Dystopian realms where you’ll meet valiant heroes, kick-ass heroines, and dangerous creatures waiting to unveil the hidden corners of the universe.
SIGILS & SPELLS includes more than twenty exclusive novels that roam the sands of Egypt, slip into the shadows of 1940s Los Angeles, voyage to the mystical land of Mabi, and dare to traverse the stars.
From the deserts of Africa to the streets of San Antonio, mythological adventurers strike out to discover brand new worlds and unravel the mysteries of Earth in a limited edition boxed set offering the diversity and originality you haven’t been able to find before now.
Dare to enter forbidden realms of unexpected beauty and peril? Secure your copy of SIGILS & SPELLS today – before it disappears forever!
Including stories from…
Kris Austen Radcliffe
USA Today bestselling authors Heather Marie Adkins and Alex Owens
Paul C Middleton and Lee Hayton
USA Today bestselling author SJ Davis
Award-Winning author Carmen Fox
USA Today bestselling author Katalina Leon
USA Today bestselling author Cate Farren
Award-Winning author V.A. Dold
Award-Winning author Ali Cross