Whether intentional or not, books written by white authors get more marketing. They have a bigger media presence. They are displayed more prominently, and they are talked about more frequently.
It is not a deliberate act on the part of the establishment. There are people on the inside that are trying to change things. But it’s an old habit, and old habits die hard, especially when it is a habit that belongs to an entire industry.
As long as we are content to just buy the books they wave in front of our faces and read the authors that we are told are great without giving any thought to who those authors are, we’re basically saying that it’s okay. We’re fine with primarily reading books written by white authors. We don’t need anything else.
We just aren’t living in a world where it is feasible to be a color-blind reader. We have to help make change happen.
If we buy books and we read books by writers of color, it will be noticed. If we can, through our spending habits and borrowing habits, change the demographics on the bestseller and most-checked-out lists, then maybe, just maybe, our kids can be color-blind readers.
We can do this for them. But we have to change our habits before “they” will change theirs.
- Cassandra Neace,
On Reading Writers of Color, Book Riot.