Why Black Speculative Fiction Month Matters

October is Black Speculative Fiction Month and like legions of others, I am celebrating it something fierce.

Why does Black Speculative Fiction Month matter?

Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because now more than ever our stories must be told and our voices must be heard. Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because too often at cons and writing events, I’m the only nonwhite guest in attendance.

Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because black lives matter, as #Ferguson has reminded us. Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because Racefail happened and there are white industry “pros” who have gone on record in claiming that black geeks are the result of the internet. Because apparently Octavia Butler didn’t happen.

Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because #BlackGirlMagic is real. It’s damn real.

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Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because a bulletproof hoodie clad superhero is allowing us to have the conversations that have been long overdue.

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Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because while Janelle Monae is an amazing chanteuse, her true identity Cindi Mayweather is the truth.

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Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because the #WeNeedDiverseBooks, #WeNeedDiverseGames and similar initiatives are desperately needed. Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because too many people can’t wrap their heads around the fact that my characters Noah Scott, Cassidy Reeves, Brecken Everett, Nemesis, Violet Peters, Iyana and Virgil Rhames epitomize #BlackExcellence and are not wishful thinking or flights of fancy.

Black Speculative Fiction Month matters because it illustrates how blacks are loving ourselves, embracing our power and creating our own spaces and efforts to thrive in a racist world that would sooner we didn’t.

That’s how #BlackExcellence gets down.

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