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Morwen Edhelwen
02-12-2012, 02:38 AM
...writing about another POC group, (I'm East Asian- Chinese Australian, and my protagonist is Garifuna),what are some things I should keep in mind to mostly avoid offending people? I think the unknowing stereotypes are more of an issue because the Garifuna aren't known to most of the English-speaking world outside of Belize, Central America, and the Caribbean, so anything the average English-speaking reader "knows" about them is going to be affected by the way I portray my narrator and his family life and his culture.

So for other POC writers writing about other
POC characters from different ethnic groups, what do you try to avoid?

AKyber36
02-12-2012, 02:49 AM
Hi! I'm Chinese-American and I tend to write Asians myself, but even that has differences, since I write both Chinese-American and Japanese-American characters. In one of my stories, I have an African-American character who's part of an ensemble cast of five.

Earlier on, even before this forum was formed, there was a lengthy debate about writing African-American characters on one particular thread. The best advice I got was not to see them based solely on race (aka "How would I write a black man?"), but just to write the character as you would write anyone else. Of course, avoiding blatant and offensive stereotypes is a biggie but I think in the end, it boils down to seeing them just like you and me. Human strengths, human flaws, quirks and traits. Doing the research, though, still plays a big part.

Morwen Edhelwen
02-12-2012, 03:00 AM
Thanks for that, AKyber36.

AKyber36
02-12-2012, 05:05 AM
No problem. =)

FoamyRules
02-12-2012, 06:07 AM
Akyber36 pretty much summed it up. One thing I try to avoid are stereotypes. Stereotypes can instantly turn a reader off and not to mention they're annoying as hell.

Kitty27
02-12-2012, 06:54 AM
Hi! I'm Chinese-American and I tend to write Asians myself, but even that has differences, since I write both Chinese-American and Japanese-American characters. In one of my stories, I have an African-American character who's part of an ensemble cast of five.

Earlier on, even before this forum was formed, there was a lengthy debate about writing African-American characters on one particular thread. The best advice I got was not to see them based solely on race (aka "How would I write a black man?"), but just to write the character as you would write anyone else. Of course, avoiding blatant and offensive stereotypes is a biggie but I think in the end, it boils down to seeing them just like you and me. Human strengths, human flaws, quirks and traits. Doing the research, though, still plays a big part.

I can add no more.

Excellent post and so true.

ViolettaVane
02-14-2012, 09:01 PM
I've written other POC characters extensively. Black British, Chinese-American, African-American, Cuban-American, Lebanese-American, Filipino-American, Native Hawaiian.

I think the key is the same for any other potentially tricky writing subject.

1) Do your research
2) Know the clichés and stereotypes; avoid them or reference them in order to subvert them
3) Be open to correction on any mistakes both before and after publication

It's that simple.

Morwen Edhelwen
02-22-2012, 11:26 AM
I've written other POC characters extensively. Black British, Chinese-American, African-American, Cuban-American, Lebanese-American, Filipino-American, Native Hawaiian.

I think the key is the same for any other potentially tricky writing subject.

1) Do your research
2) Know the clichés and stereotypes; avoid them or reference them in order to subvert them
3) Be open to correction on any mistakes both before and after publication

It's that simple.

Thanks Violetta.