• Summary

  • How do we write diverse characters in fiction? What are the do’s and don’ts of writing race, gender, ethnicity, class, sexuality, religion, origin, ability, age, appearance, and so on? Join Bethany A. Tucker and Mariëlle S. Smith as they explore why representation matters and how we, as writers and editors, can do better.
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Episodes
  • May 1 2022
    In this first episode of Season 3 of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—discuss how to write hair and head coverings.     Here’s what we talk about: That hair, hair care, and head coverings are often ethnically dictated and genderedThat there is no such thing as “ethnic” hair: we all have ethnicity!How to describe different natural hair colorsHow to describe different hair texturesWhether dreadlocks are cultural appropriationWho wears wigs and weaves, and for what reasonThat head coverings for men and women come into play in many ways that go beyond religion and what one’s culture dictates How you can use descriptions of hair and head coverings to add layers to your POV characters  And here are the (re)sources we mentioned on the show: “Untangling the Symbolism of Art History’s Most Famous Redheads” by Sarah Dotson: https://www.artsy.net/article/artsy-editorial-untangling-symbolism-art-historys-famous-redheads “Seeing red: why we need to be sensitive about using the word ‘ginger’” by David Marsh: https://www.theguardian.com/media/mind-your-language/2014/jan/24/mind-your-language-red-hair “3 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Address Redheads As ‘Gingers’” by Kali Hanson: https://www.howtobearedhead.com/3-reasons-why-you-shouldnt-address-redheads-as-gingers “Writing About Hair: The Thick and Thin of Descriptions” by Sharla Rae: https://writersinthestormblog.com/2014/07/writing-about-hair-the-thick-and-thin-of-descriptions “The East Asian women + colored hair trope” by Jess: https://writingwithcolor.tumblr.com/post/101115852994/the-east-asian-women-colored-hair-trope-an “The Ultimate Black & Natural Hair Glossary” by Joanna Samuels: https://afrocenchix.com/blogs/afrohair/the-ultimate-black-natural-hair-glossary How to Write Black Characters by Salt and Sage Books: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B087ZSJ9BN “Dear white people with dreadlocks: Some things to consider” by Emanuella Grinberg: https://edition.cnn.com/2016/03/31/living/white-dreadlocks-cultural-appropriation-feat/index.html “Once in a Lifetime: The village of Huang Luo in China’s Guangxi Region is famous for the dramatically long hair worn by its female residents” by Linn Yaeger: https://www.vogue.com/projects/13548460/women-of-huang-luo-china-long-hair-tradition “Niqab, How Does It Work? | THE BASICS, how to wear the niqab” by Niqabi Nextdoor: https://youtu.be/KAbsPFS8gus “What are the differences between a niqab, a chador, an abaya, a burkha and a hijab?”: https://www.quora.com/What-are-the-differences-between-a-niqab-a-chador-an-abaya-a-burkha-and-a-hijab “Women’s safety clothing not fit for purpose” by Matthew Gunther: https://www.chemistryworld.com/news/womens-safety-clothing-not-fit-for-purpose/1010138.article “Employers Exposed When Women’s Safety Equipment Doesn’t Fit” by Fatima Hussein and Jaclyn Diaz: https://news.bloomberglaw.com/safety/employers-exposed-when-womens-safety-equipment-doesnt-fit Tina from Glee: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1327801/characters/nm3206118 Mako Mori from Pacific Rim: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1663662/characters/nm0452860 GoGo Tomago from Big Hero 6: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2245084/characters/nm1512166 Einayim Petukhoth or Eyes Wide Open: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1424327Unorthodox: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt9815454 Crazy Rich Asians: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt3104988 Steel Magnolias: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0098384 Luke Cage: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt3322314 Barbershop: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0303714 Coming to America: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0094898 The Boondocks: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7Mly_Zj6ggHair Love: https://youtu.be/kNw8V_Fkw28 Tamora Pierce’s work: https://www.tamora-pierce.net Mulan: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120762 V for Vendetta: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0434409 The Boys: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1190634 The Wolverine: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1430132 The Princess Diaries: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0247638 Jason Elliot’s An Unexpected Light: Travels in Afghanistan: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/An_Unexpected_Light Bethany’s Editing Your Novel's Structure: Tips, Tricks, and Checklists to Get You From Start to Finish: https://theartandscienceofwords.com/new-book-for-authors/   This week’s episode page can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/04/30/s3e1   Subscribe to our newsletter here and get out Doing Diversity in Writing Toolkit, including our Calm the F*ck Down Checklist and Cultural Appropriation Checklist: https://landing.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/r3p6g8    As always, we’d love for you to join the conversation by filling out our questionnaires.    Our Doing Diversity in Writing – Writer Questionnaire can be filled in at https://forms.gle/UUEbeEvxsdwk1kuy5   Our Doing Diversity in Writing – Reader Questionnaire can be filled in at https://forms.gle/...
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    1 hr and 25 mins
  • Apr 7 2022

    In this episode of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—bring our season on Race and Ethnicity to an end by delving into some lingering some questions. 

     

    What we talked about

    • If and how to use racial slurs in our writing
    • When and how to acknowledge our characters’ racial history
    • Whether authors are allowed to write POV characters belonging to a different community
    • Co-writing with BIPOC authors as a white author
    • The representation of Asian masculinity in Western media
    • Being accused of being too political when including a diverse cast in our books
    • How to make your cast more diverse when your characters aren’t human

    (Re)sources mentioned on the show

     

    This week’s episode page can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/04/07/s2e12

     

    Subscribe to our newsletter here and get out Doing Diversity in Writing Toolkit, including our Calm the F*ck Down Checklist and Cultural Appropriation Checklist: https://landing.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/r3p6g8 

     

    As always, we’d love for you to join the conversation by filling out our questionnaires. 

     

    Our Doing Diversity in Writing – Writer Questionnaire can be filled in at https://forms.gle/UUEbeEvxsdwk1kuy5

     

    Our Doing Diversity in Writing – Reader Questionnaire can be filled in at https://forms.gle/gTAg4qrvaCPtqVJ36 

     

    Website: https://representationmatters.art

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/doingdiversityinwriting

    YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtHfIaeylIgbAWVy3E66lmw 

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    1 hr and 1 min
  • Mar 31 2022
    In this episode of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—scratch the surface of an incredibly broad topic: writing interracial and intercultural relationships.    What we talked about That writing relationships between characters of different races and cultures is really not that different from writing relationships between characters who are not exactly the same for other reasonsQuestions to ask yourself and things to keep in mind when crafting interracial and intercultural relationships in your writingA ton of examples in which interracial and intercultural relationships are depicted well and convincingly (Re)sources mentioned on the show Payne Erskin’s The Mountain Girl: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11084308-the-mountain-girl Disney’s Pocahontas: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0114148 Stargate SG-1: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0118480The Karate Kid (1984): https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0087538The Karate Kid (2010): https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1155076Kim’s Convenience: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5912064Bend It Like Beckham: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0286499Blinded by the Light: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8266310Sarfraz Mansoor’s Greetings from Bury Park: Race, Religion, and Rock N Roll: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001V7U6LEThe Grand Budapest Hotel: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2278388Angie Thomas’s The Hate U Give: https://angiethomas.com/the-hate-u-giveBenjamin Alire Saenz’s The Inexplicable Logic of My Life: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23447923-the-inexplicable-logic-of-my-lifeKim Dare’s Axel’s Pup: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21522467-axel-s-pupThe Marvel Cinematic Universe: https://marvelcinematicuniverse.fandom.com/wiki/Timeline Cassandra Clare’s Shadowhunter series: https://shadowhunters.comNever Have I Ever: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt10062292Bright: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5519340Bridgerton: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8740790 Young Royals: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt14664414 Bethany’s Editing Your Novel's Structure: Tips, Tricks, and Checklists to Get You From Start to Finish: https://theartandscienceofwords.com/new-book-for-authors   This week’s episode page can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/03/29/s2e11    Subscribe to our newsletter here and get out Doing Diversity in Writing Toolkit, including our Calm the F*ck Down Checklist and Cultural Appropriation Checklist: https://landing.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/r3p6g8    As always, we’d love for you to join the conversation by filling out our questionnaires.    Our Doing Diversity in Writing – Writer Questionnaire can be filled in at https://forms.gle/UUEbeEvxsdwk1kuy5   Our Doing Diversity in Writing – Reader Questionnaire can be filled in at https://forms.gle/gTAg4qrvaCPtqVJ36  Don’t forget, you can find us at https://representationmatters.art, on https://www.facebook.com/doingdiversityinwriting, and on https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtHfIaeylIgbAWVy3E66lmw
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    1 hr and 15 mins

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