Weekend Reads #107: Anger

You ever feel so angry and frustrated that it’s as if the emotions are choking you? That’s how I feel. Angry, frustrated, exhausted, and powerless.

Since the beginning of this year, I’ve tried to stay on top of news and politics, but the more updates I consume, the more angry and frustrated I get. I mean… yo! Jacob Blake was shot 7 TIMES!! in his back. By the police. In front of his kids! While walking toward his SUV after trying to break up a fight. What??!!

And a White kid was going around the same area (Kenosha, Wis.) toting a big-ass gun and shooting protesters; he was able to walk by the police with his gun and go home WITHOUT getting shot by the police… or stopped by them. Apparently, he got a bottle of water from them.

This is fucking crazy world. A crazy country.

I won’t even mention what’s going on in politics regarding the antics and some of the shit said at the RNC. I just…

UGH!!!

Weekend Reads #106: On the Assumption That White Means Universal

There is an assumption in publishing (and in Hollywood, actually) that books by Black authors aren’t universal, that they won’t appeal to a wide (White) audience. I recently read two articles that touch on this topic (one on LitHub and another on Tor.com) and they reminded me of a blog post by notable sci-fi author N.K. Jemisin that I read a couple years ago on why she doesn’t want her books to be placed in the African American section of bookstores and libraries. I reread Jemisin’s blog post this morning and although it was published a decade ago, back in March 2010, it still applies today.

These days, the African American section of bookstores I visit contain sociology books and history books that pertain to Black experiences in America. No longer (it seems) is that section an amalgamation of books by Black authors no matter the genre or whether or not they are fiction or nonfiction; no longer (it seems) is it a place where all books written by Black authors are dumped. But despite this improvement, publishing still has a problem with how it promotes books by Black authors.

To me, it’s recently, within the past year or so, that publishing increased its promotion of books by Black authors somewhat. I may be wrong on the timeframe, but up until then, whenever I saw a recently published novel by a Black author, they were often pushed toward Black audiences only, unlike books by White authors that were promoted to everyone, regardless of race, because of their “wide” appeal.

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Weekend Reads #105: Black Lives Matter

Weekend Reads is a weekly post in which I discuss a variety of topics and mention the books I plan to read on the weekend.

I don’t have a discussion post this week. This is just a quick chit-chat because I can hardly think straight right now. There’s so much going on at the moment. So many people are upset and in uproar. I’ve been having conversations about the current political and social climate all week that by end of the day on Thursday, my mind was so wrung out that I couldn’t think straight much less contribute well during a virtual work meeting.

Despite the corona pandemic, as a Black person, I’m happy to be alive at this time. Yes, it is a traumatic time. Yes, I’ve been anxious, depressed, confused, and angry just about everyday, but I am happy to be alive at this time to witness the movements and pushes for change to better Black lives and to see the urge for this change and support for it spread around the world, to see other nations stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement.

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Weekend Reads #52: Thoughts, Emotions

Weekend Reads is a weekly discussion on a variety of topics. At the end of the post, I’ll include what I plan to read on the weekend.

This weekend’s question/topic/whatever:

Thoughts – Saturday, July 9, 2016 6:50AM

It’s hard to get me riled up about things but events over the past couple days have pushed my limit. My emotions were already high since reading Paul Kalanithi’s When Breath Becomes Air. I was nearing the end of the book and the epilogue made me emotional. I get my news late so on Wednesday I learned of Alton Sterling’s death in Baton Rouge, La. With Thursday came news of Philando Castile’s death in Minnesota. Both are Black men and both were shot by police officers hours apart. Then on Friday morning I heard 5 officers died in a sniper shooting in Dallas, Tex. The news shocked me. The officers were targeted?

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