This is a call to action for publishers, editors, and writers alike to think boldly and critically when engaging with social justice movements, specifically, the Black Lives Matter movement.
While it is important to respect our consumer base of the past, the consumer base of the future will no doubt be born out of the marriage between brands and social activism.
Young Adult literature, or YA, has been a genre dominated by white authors and characters, but this is changing. In the past couple years, two debut novels by African-American women have taken the YA world and bestseller lists by storm: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (2017) and The Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi (2018). If you haven’t read them yet, you should.
A book’s cover and title are the first two things that a person comes in contact with, and thus are the first clues as to what that book is about. A good title and cover both need to accurately convey the content while also making it easier for the reader to figure out the general genre and topics covered as well as make it stand out from others in its genre at the same time. That’s a tough order to fill! Here’s how the team for the upcoming Spring 2019 title is handling this part of the process.
While this book is in its initial phases, we have to ask ourselves many of the questions Rosa asked herself: Where does it fit in? What message does it convey? Why this book, and why now? How do we want to portray it to the world?