It is the 1st of July and the first Wednesday of the month, so that means it is time for another Insecure Writer's Support Group post. Thank you to Alex J. Cavanaugh and the co-hosts this month for keeping this program alive for writers to share their insecurities and successes. If you are a writer, please join us by visiting the IWSG website and signing up!
I'm in a better head space to blog this month. I took an inadvertent month off, which was much needed. But do remember as your timelines and media return to "normal," the systems of this country still need to be rebuilt to work for all of its citizens, and arrests still have not been made for Breonna Taylor's killers.
This month's IWSG question is: There have been many industry changes in the last decade, so what are some changes you would like to see happen in the next decade?
Well, in the wake of the spike in tragedies that occurred in May, many publishing companies decided to open their submissions to black writers. This is interesting because there has been a huge lack of diversity in traditional publishing, from the agency to the writers, for as long as publishing companies have been prominent. Many who received this news rightfully thought, "Now, you want to look at our work?" Most black writers, including myself, have turned to self-publishing because publishers have only been interested in black voices if they provide a look into black pain. Otherwise, agents "loved but didn't connect with" our work (and often, they've already filled their quota on black authors or books about black characters, sometimes not even written by black writers).
So in the next decade, if these publishing companies truly care to represent more diverse authors and aren't just opening their gates for optics right now, I hope this sudden interest in black writers does not die down and that more of our stories--and not just the ones that center our suffering--can be accepted by the industry.