So… the BookTube community has done it again. Signaled their leftist virtue by supporting “diversity.” What’s even worse is that their covering up their leftist narrative by saying it’s in support of NaNoWriMo.
For those who aren’t aware, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. November is a month when writers come together as a community and try to finish a 50k word novel by the end of the month. Which usually means writing around 1,650 words or so a day.
I’ve participated in NaNo a number of times, and I’ve won twice. I chose not to participate this year as I’m still editing the huge novel I wrote last year for NaNo.
I woke up this morning to find the above video in my subscription feed and proceeded to groan.
First and foremost, let’s get to the truth behind this video that likes to mask itself as an encouragement for authors to write diversely. Meaning, let’s avoid pissing off minorities that might be offended if they’re not included. Because let’s face it, when you don’t add a diverse cast of characters, you’re racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, and transphobic.. whatever that means. But keep in mind that if you do include a diverse cast of characters, you’re committing the grave sin of cultural appropriation. Particularly if you’re white. Don’t you DARE try writing a person of color into your story if you don’t have a darker pigment to your skin. But also be aware that not doing so is also a sin.
You’re not going to win this battle. The diversity police have no logic. Only rhetoric.
I’ve received messages from aspiring writers who are afraid of publishing their work because of bullshit like the video above. They’re afraid that writing what’s in their mind and heart or “what they know” will be perceived as racist or ignorant to those who deem their knowledge lesser for not including (insert minority, sexuality, or disability here). Or not portraying said (insert minority, sexuality, or disability here) accurately enough to their own standards of what is accurate or sometimes even moral.
Don’t let these leftists intimidate you during one of the most special months for authors. Don’t allow their narrative of being “inclusive” (while the only kind of inclusion they don’t care about is your unpopular opinion), sway you to do their bidding. Don’t write diversely for the sake of diversity.
Write what you want. Write what inspires you. Write the characters as you see them. And strive for accuracy. If you’re writing a novel set in 16th century England, you won’t be able to be too diverse. If you’re writing a novel set in South Africa, write it as accurately to the demographics as you see fit.
Now… a rant about all the reasons this video needs more thumbs down.
Ariel… what authors weave into their story is actually none of your damn business unless they want to share it with you. Authors SHOULD NOT have to go to their (insert minority, sexuality, or disability labeled) friend to get better clarity as to what it’s like to be them. Fuck your space spaces. You are limiting another person’s experiences to their ethnicity or sexuality as though that is their defining trait and it plays into every aspect of their life.
Don’t be fooled when these lefties say that writing diversely shouldn’t be something to be scared of. It is. They will come after you regardless of what you do. If you write diversely, they will come after you. If you don’t write diversely, they will still come after you.
Write what you want to write during this month of Nano. And don’t let the diversity police tell you that you’re more or less virtuous for choosing to write what you want.
Identity politics has absolutely no place in creative expression. And neither do the diversity police.
By the way, Ariel, being Canadian and Honduran makes you two different ethnicities. Not two different races. Most anthropological studies formally and scientifically recognize the existence of three to four races. Caucasian, mongoloid or Asian, negroid or black and australoid. According to this classification which was created by Professor of Antrhopology Carleton S. Coon in 1962, you’re white. There are more recent classifications that include Native American bloodlines, but it’s relatively new and is rarely used. And given that Honduras was repeatedly colonized by Europeans and various tribes, there’s no real way of knowing your racial origins without some genealogical study.