Race and Fandom

Do you assume all fans are white? How about the writers?

My co-authors and I tend to only talk about fiction in this journal. Even the personal things I do share, tend to be those that affect my writing. Before the whole racefail mess, Chris Taylor and I never gave any thought to mentioning race in our journal (even though our new book, Faewolf, has a non-white main character). It made us realise that most our readers probably assume we are both white. Chris, is, to quote her, “black and awesome.” (I agree, esp about the awesome part.) We are both bisexual and have been pretty open about that, in part because we write queer-themed fiction.

A friend sent us information about the “Shatter the Silence” protest and, after talking it over, we have decided to post to both the original fiction and fan fiction journals on Monday. So add another FOC and one FOC-ally to the call to shatter the silence:

Please spread the word about this.

As RaceFail 09 continues, it has become clear that there are those who are hellbent on marginalizing and silencing people of color. In the past few months, minorities have been denigrated by bigoted authors and publishers who have also asserted that Fen of Color are rare and pratically non-existent. Despite numerous discussions and attempts to enlighten on the fact that POCs are fans, writers, artists and just as integral to this genre as our white counterparts, we are continuously dismissed.

On Monday May 18, 2009, we are asking anyone who identifies as a POC/non-white to post this banner, their speculative short stories, artwork, poetry or simply write a post on their favorite fandom on their blogs as an act of protest to show we will not be silent or invisible. The day of protest is entitled Fen Of Color United or more aptly, FOC_U.

White allies can also show solidarity for this event by posting this banner and expressing the need for diversity and speaking out against the bigotry in the genre, through posts and/or their creative work as well.

In addition, a new community entitled has been created. It’s designed to be a safespace for POCs/non-whites and white allies to discuss the issues pertaining to RaceFail and a place to counteract its destructive effects. And it’s also a fun place for everyone to also discuss their favorite fandoms. While memberships and posts are under moderation for the time being (until the community gets more established and input is welcomed), everyone is encouraged to join and make this a home.

You can help out by spreading the word and reposting this banner on your personal blog or creating one of your own if you’d like.

The gauntlet’s been thrown and I for one think it’s past time for us to take a stand and let our voices be heard, whether some people want to hear them or not.

If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to stop by .

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