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I had a great time on Friday moderating a panel livestreamed from the UK's YA Thriller Conference. The topic was Diversity in YA Fiction. Shout-out to author Madeline Dyer for putting it all together and to my YA colleagues, authors: Fran Dorricott (UK), Nia Davenport (USA), and Isvari Mohan (USA).
What did we discuss?
-What is 'diversity'? What do we mean by 'diverse YA thrillers'? And why is diversity important?
-Why are own voices books so important?
-How important is it to show multi-faceted and nuanced marginalizations in YA fiction?
-Why is tokenism harmful?
-Which are your favorite diverse YA thrillers out there?
-Advice for writers who want to write minority characters but do not share these identities themselves? There's been some debate as to whether writers who don't belong to these marginalized groups should be writing marginalized main characters at all…
-Thoughts on sensitivity readers and lots more. Feel free to comment. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this event and if you'd like to see more such events.