what does diverse mean exactly?We loved this explanation from the We Need Diverse Books Tumblr: “We recognize all diverse experiences, including (but not limited to) LGBTQIA, people of color, gender diversity, people with disabilities, and ethnic, cultural, and religious minorities.”
One thing I'm trying to more aware of is how I pick my books and who is writing them. It's pretty easy to fall into various reading ruts, but I want to get more out of my reading, especially since I plan to spend so much time reading. I read for comfort, so I want a ready stock of tried and true authors. I read to experience many lives, so I want a variety (a diversity!) of experiences that I won't have on my own. I read to inform myself, so I want a chance to understand people and issues that I don't know I don't know about. And I read for catharsis, so I want stuff that will blow the top of my head off, and that stuff could be anywhere.
Anyway, I'm signing up for the Dive Into Diversity Challenge 2015 hosted by Reading Wishes and Rather Be Reading. They suggest using lists such as Finding Diverse Lit.
As an experiment, I checked my last 20 completed books (as of March 24, 2015), and found that I skew towards female authors, although the characters are more mixed. Most but not all of the authors and characters are white Americans, but there are Europeans, Africans, and Australians in there. The books cover the LGBTQA part of LGBTQIA, and included characters of a variety of religions and cultural backgrounds. So I know I like different stuff, and I want to keep reading it.
In this challenge I think I'll try to check back each month and see what kind of things I'm missing. I'll update this post if I manage to post any further thoughts, but I think I'll start with looking at the religions of my characters. Rather Be Reading focussed on this in February, but since they haven't put out a new essay, I'll just jump on tardily. (Actually, they did, but it wasn't linked to the main one, and I'd rather do religion than economics right now, so I'm staying with my first choice. It's all about me, after all.)
So, my April diversity challenge will be religion -- is it important to the characters? Is it mainstream, for me or for them? What can I learn? What did I know that I was right about? What was wrong? What did I not know and not know that I did not know?