I apologise if you’ve noted my absence — the next month or so is exam season, so you probably won’t see me often.
Yes, ladies, gentlemen, and rebels without a cause — the blog chain is back up and running for business! This month’s theme:
What kinds of published books would you like to see more of?
If there’s anything that A-Level maths has taught me, it’s that there are endless possibilities, an infinity of infinities, and an absolute mountain of books that need to be published. Well, maybe it didn’t teach me that last part, but you probably catch my drift — for every book you can find on the shelves, there are a million more that haven’t been written yet, or just haven’t been published yet — may never be published, just because of the genre or ‘kind’ they fit into.
So let’s get back to the question and look at the types of books I would like to see more of — not the ones that haven’t been written, but the ones that we’re not able to read.
- Type Number One: Minorities
I don’t know many figures, but I imagine that much of the world — a majority, even — is part of a minority, whether that be the LGBTQ…etc community, a racial minority, a religious minority, a disability, a mental illness… the list goes on. So why are all our novels (as always, I’m thinking about YA in particular) about a majority character? Why are the minorities, if present at all, side-kicks? And, on the rare occasion that you read a novel with someone of a minority as the protagonist, why is it that they have to ‘get past’ their ‘problem’ in some way? We live in a diversifying culture, so why doesn’t our literature reflect that? Why can’t I pick up a book about a gay black guy battling literal demons from the same shelf as I pick up a book about a young deaf girl who finds it amusing to sign insults at the zombies as she runs away from them? Why do the few books we have about people who are ‘different’ get separated into weird genres specifically down to the orientation/religion/race/disability of the main character? Why can’t we just read books about people?
- Type Number Two: Odd
I’ve read a lot of books in my time, and after a while of reading the same genre, I start to see a pattern — a story arc or character set that I can only presume are what the publishers are most comfortable with and seem like a safe financial bet. If you like familiarity but can’t stand to re-read, this is great. Brilliant. The best thing to ever happen. But in the end, ‘commercially viable’ begins to be a synonym for ‘boring’, and you realise you want something you can’t guess the plot of. It doesn’t even have to be good — you just want change. It’s one of the main reasons that this blog has hardly any book reviews — I just haven’t been reading, and when I have, it’s been boring. The same as ever. I want to be able to go into a bookshop that is so full of weird stuff that it can’t begin to be categorised into ‘fantasy’, ‘contemporary’, ‘romance’, or anything as mundane as that. I want to be overwhelmed by choice and pick a book completely at random, because even the blurb can’t tell me how the story will end. And then I want to read it. And hate it. And go back to that bookshop and try again. I don’t want marketable; I want interesting.
There are probably a thousand other things I want to see in books, but I won’t go on. You’ve probably realised by now why I rambled on about maths at the very start of this post — I want the ‘types’ of books I read to be an infinity of infinities in every possible way. What do I want to see published? Every bit of writing under the sun, and quite a lot more that no one’s yet dared to write.
It’s not much to ask, is it?
Blog Chain Schedule:
May 5th – http://sammitalk.wordpress.com/
May 6th – http://www.nerdgirlinc.blogspot.com/
May 7th – http://nasrielsfanfics.wordpress.com/
May 8th – http://erinkenobi2893.wordpress.com/
May 10th – http://randomofalife.blogspot.com/
May 11th – https://maralaurey.wordpress.com/
May 12th – http://www.fidaislaih.blogspot.com/
May 14th – http://theloonyteenwriter.wordpress.com/
May 15th – http://insideliamsbrain.wordpress.com/
May 16th – http://taratherese.wordpress.com/
May 17th – http://miriamjoywrites.com/
May 18th – http://oliviarivers.wordpress.com/
May 19th – http://afoodyportfolio.wordpress.com/
May 20th – http://magicandwriting.wordpress.com/
May 21st – http://unikkelyfe.wordpress.com/
May 22nd – http://www.brookeharrison.com/
May 23rd – http://eighthundredninety.blogspot.com/
May 24th – http://www.oyeahwrite.wordpress.com/
May 25th – http://avonsbabbles.wordpress.com/
May 26th – TheUnsimpleMind – link to come
May 27th – http://thependanttrilogy.wordpress.com/
May 28th – http://www.lilyjenness.blogspot.com/
May 29th – http://sunsandstarsanddreams.wordpress.com/
May 30th – http://teenscanwritetoo.wordpress.com/ – We’ll announce the topic for June’s blog chain!