Why We Need Diverse Books

We need more of all of this–and ALSO more characters with disabilities! (See my old post on this at https://ramblingjustice.wordpress.com/2013/03/03/1st-met-me/ )
Plus, more characters who grew up in poverty or from working class backgrounds

Jennifer Chen

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I’m proud to join the #WeNeedDiverseBooks campaign because as an Asian American girl growing up in a mostly Caucasian suburb of New Jersey, I searched for characters who looked like me. Claudia Kishi, bless her, was my role model. She was creative, quirky, and stylish. I’m pretty sure every Asian girl in the 90s looked up to her. But it’s been a long time since Claudia Kishi. We need more Asian, Latino, black, gay, lesbian, and transgender characters!

One of my fellow Regal Literary agent sisters, Kate Hart, put together a survey that revealed 90 percent of YA book covers feature white characters.

We can do better. We have to do better.

As a writer, I write Asian American characters who aren’t just the friend, math nerd, or sidekick. I’m currently writing a YA book about two Asian American brothers and part of me worries that the book won’t…

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