These systemic quotas further isolate writers of color, and homogenize the publishing landscape. And this is in the general market! That considered, it behooves the general market to actively seek underrepresented writers—and indeed they are proving to have an appetite for diverse storytellers.
The competition to legitimize yourself as a published author is extreme. Publishing with an independent press insists that our stories must be told, that our prose is necessary for the world at large, no matter how small the reach may be. It is worth telling, and it is significant and doesn’t require legitimacy from big publishing to enrich its value. In a writer’s forum online, a fellow author recently said, “So many contemporary novels seem manic, agitated, escapist, goofy, fantastically un-serious, and concerned with nothing of lasting value.”
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