“Afro Picks” from Publishers Weekly

Those of you who read this blog regularly have probably noticed that I’m doing two blog posts a week: one in my Newlywed at 50 series and another about writing. Given my N@50 post about boundaries, I’m taking a break from blogging for the holidays. I’ll be back with new posts after the first of the year.

Since I’m not writing an original writing post this week, I thought I’d point you to an “interesting” article about the state of African-American fiction. To be honest, the cover and title, Afro Picks, disturbed me so badly that I have yet to read the article. I’m going to read it though and I’ll let you know what I think in 2010 which is only a week away. In the meantime, let me know what you think.

Here’s the link to the article: http://www.publishersweekly.com/article/CA6711430.html

Here’s the link to the cover, which you have to view:

It seems a lot of folks didn’t like the cover picture. Read what the editor says: http://www.publishersweekly.com/article/CA6711692.html

I really don’t have a problem with the image. My problem is with the combination of the image, the cover title and the article content. The image and the cover title did nothing for a genre that’s trying to mainstream itself.

The article really gave no new information. It was once again African-American fiction week at PW so the standard fare article was trotted out. I wonder what we’ll see next year.

Enjoy the holidays and be safe!

2 thoughts on ““Afro Picks” from Publishers Weekly

  1. Just as there is variety in mainstream fiction there must be variety in African American fiction. As an avid reader I supported our local bookstore Black Images. They offered a wide selection of books and the 2 women who owned the store were very knowledgeable about the books that they carried. However when the big box stores began to offer the same books at a discount the customers left and after 10 years they closed. I must admit that before they closed I did not purchase as many books as I did in the past. Why? Because African American fiction was no longer good fiction. The Terry McMillan school of writing opened. Everyone wrote the same story. The only difference is the names used to tell the story. Publishers and writers should realize that diversity in storytelling will sell books.

  2. I don’t care for the afro-pics cover, but I’m not offended by it. I think “we” do such a disservice by segmenting our books out of the mainstream and then wondering why no one is reading what we write. I read everything from YA books to sci-fi to romance. I want to sell to everyone, not just black readers. I agree with poster #1 in that a lot of AA fiction isn’t that great anymore. It’s all the same. The market is too saturated. People should market to all audiences, not just AA.

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