Ok, I have a serious question. Feel free to give me your answer/opinion on anon if you don’t feel comfortable replying here.
What would you think about a Caucasian (me) writing from the perspective of a mixed girl? (half black, half white)?
They say to “write what you know” and I obviously have no experience being colored; however, this story is a fantasy story so it’s my own made-up world. My character will face more prejudices against her magical abilities, rather than her ethnicity or color of skin.
This is a very diverse world. Not only am I going to incorporate every shade of skin I can think of (this is a very big world), but there will be fantasy traits mixed with ethnic ones. Example: a caramel skinned mermaid with blue hair and golden eyes.
It’s a very colorful place, and the mixed skin is very significant to my character and what she stands for in this fantasy place (and to my disorder in a way, too, I guess). It relates to her heritage and puts her in a unique position to possibly save this world, actually. Her darkened skin color allows her to absorb more of the element of Light from the sun, while the “villain” is a powerful, pasty white woman who remains in the Shadows.
Because, how many times has dark skin and hair represented the bad guy? Too many! I want a darker skinned hero.
The ethnicities fit perfectly for my story, but here is my concern: If people read this, or if this becomes a published piece of work (in my wildest dreams), are people going to get their panties in a bunch when they find out a white girl represented a variety of ethnicities, instead of a person of color?
This story is not about slavery or real life oppression. It’s a fantasy world with elves and fairies and mermaids and dragons and elemental powers. Nerdy stuff. I think the fantasy genre is too white washed, so something has to change. Just look at the big ones - Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, The Hunger Games, etc.
I even searched tumblr for the tag “black mermaid” and “black fairy” and got a bunch of pasty goth girls. I want to change that. Fantasy isn’t just for white people, and we are missing out on a variety of fantasy characters by excluding people of color from this genre, or just making them background characters.
So, tumblr, I want your opinion: would you read this story or would it be offensive?