Many, many wonderful sessions and signings at BEA this past weekend but the diversity sessions are what mattered most to me. The diveristy sessions were not all listed in the official program and all schedule within an extremely tight time frame (some at the exact same time!) yet the #WeNeedDiversity session managed to fill the room. Other sessions included “Where are All the Kids of Color” and “Multicultural Publishers in Conversation”. My presence was in spirit and via Twitter. I leave it to Lyn Miller Lachmann who was there to give a recap.
Both panelists reminded the audience that in our quest to get the major publishers to take on more diverse books, we cannot lose sight of the diverse books that are available today. Nearly half of those books, according to John, are published by small presses. And those small presses need our love. If it turns out that the major corporations don’t respond to the campaign, or if they support it until the “next big thing” comes along, the small presses need to be there, because publishers like Just Us Books and Cinco Puntos Press truly believe in diversity and are in it for the long haul.
Audio of #WeNeedDiverseBooks is here. I’ve not had an opportunity to listen yet, but I will. The panel included Lamar Giles Mike Jung Matt de la PeñaGrace Lin Jacqueline Woodson Ellen C. Oh Aisha Saeed and Marieke Nijkamp.
I had to edit this page to ad a link to Grace Lin’s Cheat Sheet for Selling Diversity.
I feel like this Monday is a day for looking back and for looking forward: Sankofa.