I tried not to look at the other results when I was searching for K.T. Bradford’s article on xojane I Challenge You to Stop Reading White, Straight, Cis Male Authors for One Year, but unsurprisingly, it looks pretty bad. Mostly I wanted to do this for my own information, but now I don’t mind adding my noise against the ignorant, the racists and the sexists.
Last year, I recorded reading 76 books. I know I read more like 120 books, but I get lazy and I read fast and I forget what I read. Which is why I want to write down what I’ve been reading in the first place. Anyway. Since high school or college I’ve consistently read many more women than men, so that’s a given.
Women authors (presumed to be white): 63 out of 76
Women authors of color: 5 out of 76 (yeesh)
Men authors of color: 6 (ditto)
Men (presumed to be white): 7
Look at that. Even given my bias against men, I still managed to read more white men than either women or men of color. That’s bad.
As for content:
6 books had a character with some kind of disability or disability was important to the narrative (the wording here because of a memoir)
22 books had characters of color
4 books had a LGBTQ character
66 books had a woman main character or focused on women
Those numbers are a little soft since I read a number of books about writing (by women) and a bunch of SFF that had non-humans as the main characters.
I was already doing better in 2015 before the challenge:
31 books read
7 written by people of color (6 women, 1 man)
28 written by women
That’s still 24 books by white women.