rape in fictional worlds

Raping your Female Characters isn’t the Only Way to Depict a Harsh Fictional World

I recently had THAT conversation again; the one where I criticise a fictional world for gratuitous use of rape and sexual aggression against women, only for fans of said universe to defend it by telling me how it’s a harsh world and that’s what would happen. It’s a tiring conversation, so here’s why you don’t have to use rape to ensure your readers know your world is horrible.

How to write people of colour

How to write people of colour and ‘the other’

A practical guide to writing people of colour. However, a lot of this advice applies to anyone writing the other, such as men writing women, also writing about disabled or non-cis characters if you are neither of these things.

Rewriting the Balance of Black and White Characters in Fiction

I loved Chella‚Äôs recent article on avoiding black stereotypes in our writing. It highlights an issue so long-standing in fiction I think it calls for a deeper discussion. It was a revelation to me, following some general conversations with Chella, to realise that there are default settings for characters in fiction. I never even considered…

black character stereotypes

9 Black Character Stereotypes to Avoid in Your Writing

Congratulations, you’re writing a story with a diverse set of characters. This is a great thing and needs to be supported. A fear of political correctness mustn’t stop writers from creating characters from other races, religions or walks of life. Writing from beyond your own experience takes a little bit more thought and work, but that’s our job, right? The first step to writing non-white characters is understanding the mistakes of the past. So here’s my checklist for avoiding the most common black character stereotypes…