Doing Diversity in Writing
DDW - S3 Ep 02 - Writing Women We Want to Read

DDW - S3 Ep 02 - Writing Women We Want to Read

May 31, 2022

In this episode of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—talk about writing better female characters. This is the first part of a two-part episode on the topic.

 

Here’s what we talked about:

  • That, in the US, women are estimated to buy 70–80% of fiction books
  • There are way more male than female leads in children’s books
  • That novels, on average and across the board, only have one female character to four male characters
  • But that many readers FEEL like there are way more female protagonists these days than there are male protagonists 
  • That women writers also have a tendency to write male characters, and that women are not exempt from perpetuating problematic female representations
  • What kind of roles women tend to have in fiction
  • A selection of tropes to avoid or seriously consider when writing female characters
  • Some of the most persistent narrative structures that disempower and/or harm women
  • Why it is important to write female characters better, even if books with badly written women are selling well 

And here are the (re)sources we mentioned on the show:

 

 

This week’s episode page can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/05/31/s3e2

 

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 

DDW - S3 Ep01 – How to Write Hair and Head Coverings

DDW - S3 Ep01 – How to Write Hair and Head Coverings

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 gendered
  • That there is no such thing as “ethnic” hair: we all have ethnicity!
  • How to describe different natural hair colors
  • How to describe different hair textures
  • Whether dreadlocks are cultural appropriation
  • Who wears wigs and weaves, and for what reason
  • That 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:

 

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/gTAg4qrvaCPtqVJ36 

 

Website: https://representationmatters.art

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

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

DDW - S2 Ep12 - Using Racial Slurs, Acknowledging Characters’ Racial History, and Other End of Season Thoughts

DDW - S2 Ep12 - Using Racial Slurs, Acknowledging Characters’ Racial History, and Other End of Season Thoughts

April 6, 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 

DDW S2 Ep11 – Writing Interracial and Intercultural relationships

DDW S2 Ep11 – Writing Interracial and Intercultural relationships

March 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 reasons
  • Questions to ask yourself and things to keep in mind when crafting interracial and intercultural relationships in your writing
  • A ton of examples in which interracial and intercultural relationships are depicted well and convincingly

(Re)sources mentioned on the show

 

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

DDW - S2 Ep10 - Naming Our Fictional Characters

DDW - S2 Ep10 - Naming Our Fictional Characters

March 23, 2022

In this episode of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—talk about naming our fictional characters. 

 

What we talked about

  • General things to look out for when picking our characters’ names
  • All the different aspects that might influence which names make sense for your characters
  • Where to look for names
  • How to verify whether these names are appropriate for your characters or not

(Re)sources mentioned on the show

 

This week’s episode page can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/03/24/s2e10

 

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

DDW - S2 Ep 09 -  Flipping the Script and Building Different Worlds with Clare Sager

DDW - S2 Ep 09 - Flipping the Script and Building Different Worlds with Clare Sager

March 16, 2022

In this episode of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—interview Clare Sager about building different worlds in our fiction.

 

Clare Sager is an office lackey turned full-time author. With both a bachelor of arts and a masters of arts in Creative Writing, she is now living her life-long dream of writing fantasy adventure stories of swoon-worthy, troublesome men and strong, sassy women who can handle them.

 

When she's not writing or master planning her next book, she's an editor, outline coach, and formatter. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, sewing, and lifting weights at the gym (she’s as shocked by the latter as anyone). Her stationery addiction knows no bounds, with a washi tape and fountain pen collection to rival that of a stationery store. She loves to spend time chilling out with her planner plotting world domination. She likes cats, coffee, and cocktails, and speaks fluent sarcasm. 

 

What we talked about

  • Why Clare felt compelled to build a different world for her fictional characters
  • How consistently asking yourself “What if…?” will help you build better fictional worlds
  • How to use a coin (or dice!) to populate your world with a wide set of characters 
  • That diverse characters are just like any other characters
  • The importance of being curious about the world and remaining open to what there is to learn

(Re)sources mentioned on the show

 

This week’s episode page can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/03/17/s2e9

 

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

DDW - S2 Ep 08 – When Money Gets Between Your Writing and Hiring Professionals

DDW - S2 Ep 08 – When Money Gets Between Your Writing and Hiring Professionals

March 9, 2022

In this episode of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—take a pause to talk about what to do when hiring professionals to better your writing is not an option (yet). 

 

What we talked about

  • That there’s privilege in being able to advice others to do it right or not do it at all
  • That not everyone has the same resources going into publishing their work
  • What options are out there for authors with limited or no budgets

(Re)sources mentioned on the show

 

This week’s episode page can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/03/10/s2e8/

 

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

DDW - S2 Ep 07 - Sensitivity Reading with Erin Olds, CEO of Salt & Sage Books

DDW - S2 Ep 07 - Sensitivity Reading with Erin Olds, CEO of Salt & Sage Books

March 2, 2022

In this episode of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—ask Erin Olds, CEO of Salt & Sage Books, all our questions about sensitivity reading.

 

Who is Erin Olds? 

 

Erin Olds loves to travel, read, and drink boba tea! She currently lives in Seattle, where she homeschools her two excellent children. Erin is the CEO of and editor at Salt & Sage Books, an editing company dedicated to kindness. With a degree in English and French, Erin has worked with authors of all ages her whole adult life. Her poetry and short fiction have been published in various journals and magazines and won a variety of awards. She is a hybrid published author, with several indie books out under a pen name and her first traditionally published book (still a secret!) in progress.

 

What we talked about

  • What sensitivity reading is and who sensitivity readers are
  • The kind of sensitivity reading requests Salt & Sage Books receives most often
  • The emotional labor that goes into sensitivity reading
  • Some alternative options for writers with limited budgets

(Re)sources mentioned on the show

 

This week’s episode page can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/03/03/s2e7/

 

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

DDW - S2 Ep 06 - Diversity and representation in Disney’s Encanto

DDW - S2 Ep 06 - Diversity and representation in Disney’s Encanto

February 24, 2022

In this episode of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—discuss diversity and representation in Disney’s Encanto. 

 

What we talked about

  • All the ways in which diversity shows up in Encanto, from skin colour to body type, to the different roles the characters get to play
  • How no cultural artefact, including Encanto, can speak for an entire community, and why that is OK
  • How Encanto is a step in the right direction as far as diverse representation goes

(Re)sources mentioned on the show

 

We didn’t mention all of these during the episode, but these are some of the resources we dug into while preparing for the recording. 

 

This week’s episode page can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/02/24/s2e6/

 

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 and on https://www.facebook.com/doingdiversityinwriting 

DDW S2 Ep05 – Indigenous Futurisms and Writing Indigenous Characters with Prof. Grace L. Dillon

DDW S2 Ep05 – Indigenous Futurisms and Writing Indigenous Characters with Prof. Grace L. Dillon

February 17, 2022

In this episode of Doing Diversity in Writing, we—Bethany and Mariëlle—interview Professor Grace L. Dillon about Indigenous Futurisms and how (not) to write Indigenous characters. 

 

Grace L. Dillon (Anishinaabe with family, friends, and relatives from Bay Mills Nation and Garden River Nation with Aunties and Uncles also from the Saulteaux Nation) is Professor in the Indigenous Nations Studies Department in the School of Gender, Race, and Nations and also Affiliated Professor at English and Women, Gender, and Sexualities Departments at Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on a range of interests including Indigenous Futurisms, Queer Indigenous Studies, Gender, Race, and Nations Theories and Methodologies courses, Climate and Environmental Justice(s) from Indigenous Perspectives, Reparations Justice, Resurgence Justice, Science Fiction, Indigenous Cinema, Popular Culture, Race and Social Justice, and early modern literature. (For her full biography, please check out the episode page on our website.)

 

What Grace shared with us

 

  • Why and how she coined the term Indigenous Futurisms
  • What it was like to be a consultant as an Anishinaabe person to directors Scott Cooper and Guillermo del Toro
  • Some behind-the-scenes stories about the filming of Twilight
  • What true allyship looks like and how we can become an ally
  • How we can honour someone else’s story
  • Best practices of engaging with Indigenous communities
  • Grace L Dillion’s academic email is: dillong@pdx.edu

 

(Re)sources mentioned on the show and other recommendations by Grace L. Dillon, many of which are LGBTQ2+

 

 

This week’s episode page, with Grace L. Dillon’s full bio, can be found here: https://representationmatters.art/2022/02/17/s2e5/

 

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/ and on https://www.facebook.com/doingdiversityinwriting 

 

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