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Ellen Oh On “Crazy Rich Asians” and Representation

in Pop Culture by

Ellen Oh is one of the founders of We Need Diverse Books, a nonprofit organization that promotes diversity of multiple forms in children’s literature and publishing. She recently took to twitter to voice her dreams of more support for Asian American children’s book authors and illustrators with the stardom Crazy Rich Asians has been enjoying, both on page and screen. Representation matters to impressionable children as Ellen Oh pointed out in one of her tweets, “I didn’t see myself in any positive way as a child growing up in the states. It wasn’t until Joy Luck Club, written by an Asian American woman, that I finally understood the importance and the desperate need for representation.”   Hopefully, passionate advocates for this kind of representation…

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BEA’s BookCon Delivers The Authors and Books We’ve Been Waiting On

in Fiction by

The Book Expo of America (BEA) is one of the biggest book conventions in the country. Founded in the 1940s, it’s also one of the oldest book conventions around. It takes place over the course of four days, is always held in a major city, and is a great way for authors and publishers to connect with booksellers, readers, librarians and other people in the industry. This year BEA is being held in Chicago from May 11-14 and hundreds of authors and readers will be attending. The first three days of BEA are a trade show, and mostly geared toward people in the publishing industry. Which is why we’re most excited about the final day, BookCon, a full day event where…

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Ellen Oh discusses why we need diverse books

in Nonfiction by

If you’re a frequent Twitter user, then you’ve probably already heard of We Need Diverse Books. The phenomenon hit social media last year, shortly after BookCon announced a panel, “Blockbuster Reads: Meet the Kids’ Authors That Dazzle,” which only featured white men. A few YA authors, including popular fantasy author Ellen Oh, refused to take this sitting down. Along with 22 other authors, publishers and bloggers, she organized a campaign designed at bringing diversity and awareness to children’s literature. From May 1 to 3, 2014, readers, authors, and concerned citizens were encouraged to take action, including holding up cue cards completing the sentence: “We need diverse books because…” The response was immediate: #WeNeedDiverseBooks went viral, with thousands of users posting…

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