Sunday, March 19, 2006

Author Millenia Black Snubs Pyramid

And rightly so.

It takes a lot to surprise me, but this did. Up and coming author Millenia Black received an offensive e-mail from a bookstore in her native Florida. She wrote about it on her blog and asked her audience whether or not they feel it was appropriate for Pyramid Books to send her an e-mail asking her if she was black......and this is post the booking of the event! Why even bother to ask then?? Who knows.

I've read much about this all over the blogosphere (which is how I discovered the name and location of the store in question, since Millenia decided not to out them publicly in her blog) and many people feel MB overreacted. I disagree. I obviously see the impact of the point she's making. We all need to wake up and realize that racism exists because we all play roles (large and small) that support it....

Millenia Black is obviously playing another role altogether. Prime example worth following.


Anonymous Kay said...

What legitimite purpose could anyone have for asking that sort of question? It has no importance what so ever. I see nothing wrong with Millenia Black posting about that unfortunate incident on her blog. The general public needs to know that this sort of thing goes on.

3/21/2006 12:39 PM  
Anonymous Flo Jo said...

I agree that she did the right thing. If it were me, I would not have been so quite about it. I think I'd call the ACLU, the press, everybody.

3/22/2006 8:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why are folks making such a big deal about this? Most people don't know that Millenia Black is a white person, so because of that, I don't think it was a problem for the bookstore to ask if she was black.

3/31/2006 7:15 AM  
Blogger Bestselling Author, Pontif. said...

I think you've got it wrong, Anonymous, Millenia Black is African-American....not that it matters one way or another. The inquiry was wrong no matter what race someone is. You're missing the entire point.

4/02/2006 9:02 AM  
Anonymous Claudia said...

I think anonymous was actually saying that it was ok to ask if Millenia was black because the name Millenia clearly isn't like the "white" names of the mostly (white) mainstream authors. The bookstore was still wrong though.

People seem to unconsciously rely on such cues--witness the surprise of some posters that discovered Tess Gerittsen is Asian after reading her entry on race & publishing at MJ Rose's site. I'm guessing Tess has her pic in the back of her books, but I'm not sure. If so, I'm surprised people are surprised she's Asian.

I sometimes see that surprise after flustered new clients ask me where "I" am when visiting my office because they assumed they were talking to a white woman on the phone.

4/03/2006 6:28 PM  
Blogger Bestselling Author, Pontif. said...

Claudia.....yes, Tess' photo is on all of her books that I've ever seen. I think people are surprised she's Asian because, as she stated, she writes mainstream fiction about white characters.

My bottom line is that it doesn't matter what race/color anybody is. People who decide it does matter are trouble-making idiots. I can't wait for folks to catch up with that fact.

4/04/2006 9:37 PM  

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