Happy New Year to everyone!  I’m finally getting a chance to sit down and get some writing done.  It’s been a while since my last review, and now that a year has gone by since I first started this blog, I have a newfound appreciation for full-time bloggers :).

This post might be a little rambling.  It took me several quiet days of thinking to determine what I want to focus on this year, but I think I’ve got it now.  One of my issues with decision-making is that so many good books exist, so this year I’m giving myself permission to read whatever I want regardless of genre, but with a heavy emphasis in key areas:

  1. Small/Indie Press: So much talent out there; not all (or even most) of it is represented by mega-publishers.  I really, really, REALLY want to connect with writers who are self-published or represented at small publishing houses.
  2. Marginalized Religious Identities: Religion is a key piece of my own identity, having grown up in a strict Christian environment.  While I no longer identify this way, religion and spirituality continue to weigh on my mind, and I seek to further understand religions that aren’t mainstream American; ie, pretty much anything other than evangelical Christianity.  Thus, I plan to read some holy texts (the Quran, Bhagavad Gita, etc) in order to gain some understanding, and I would love to read books featuring protagonists who live in these communities or struggle within them.
  3. OwnVoices: Not that it CAN’T be done well, but I’m a bit tired of reading fiction about PoC or the LGBTQIA+ community or non-Christian religious groups that is written by straight white people.  Beyond doubt, my favorite reads this past year were written by those who closely identified with their protagonists.  This authenticity cannot be replaced by research.

And of course, this blog is still focused on diverse and marginalized voices in the book world.  This year, I will be participating in challenges like #DiversityBingo2017 (more on this later!) and Read Diverse 2017 sponsored by Naz @ Read Diverse Books.

Other things really important to me this year is increasing my understanding and working toward being a strong ally and continuing to confront my own bias as well as teach those I can (yay for teaching teenagers–I love their squishy little faces).

I’m probably never going to be an amazing blogger full of pretty pictures and graphic design and whatnot, but whatever I can do, I’m determined to do it.

So here we go again :).  And here’s to keeping this corner of the world afloat and alive and passionately working to promote equity and justice for all our communities.