Have you heard of Latinas for Latino Literature? We sat down to ask a few questions of this new movement’s four founding members (all Latina bloggers!) to find out what it’s all about.
What is Latinas for Latino Literature? How did the movement begin and how has it evolved?
Latinas for Latino Literature is a group of Latinas dedicated to promoting the need for more literature published by and for Latino adults and children. We started when four Latina bloggers (The Wise Latina Club‘s Viviana Hurtado, Autism Wonderland‘s Lisa Fontanez, All of Me Now‘s Carla Molina, and Mommy Maestra‘s Monica Olivera) responded on their blogs to an article published by the New York Times on the lack of access Latino students have to literature that reflects their own faces and experiences.
A blog carnival was launched with the four bloggers’ responses and their invitation to other Latina bloggers to join them in sharing their opinions on the matter.
Shortly thereafter a Twitter Party was organized encouraging others to purchase Latino children’s literature as gifts for their children during the holiday season. The Twitter Party was a great success, receiving 3 million impressions.
What does Latinas for Latino Literature hope to accomplish?
We’re hoping to start the conversation among Latinos everywhere about the need for more representation in the publishing industry. We want to show publishing companies that Latinos do want and will purchase books by Latino authors about the diverse Latino experience. We hope to help them understand that our community is very diverse and complex and so by publishing the work of many Latino authors, the better their chances of successfully engaging the market.
We also want to help publishers find creative ways to reach out to the Latino community and make these books accessible to them. This partly requires us to apply gentle pressure to major bookstore chains to carry these titles.
What’s next for Latinas for Latino Literature?
We are brimming with ideas! We are in the process of organizing regular Twitter parties and blog carnivals centered around Latino literature and Latino children’s literature. In addition, we have a few special projects we’re working on to help get these books into our community.
How can people get involved?
The best thing people can do is put their money where their mouth is and buy books by Latino authors or about the Latino experience. People can also tweet or message their favorite publishers letting them know that they’d like to see more of this type of literature. People can also write reviews of books they’ve enjoyed by Latino authors – It would be a way for publishers & booksellers to quantify how many people are reading Latino literature.
In addition, all are invited to like the Facebook page we created to keep everyone up to date on our events and projects, as well as to share articles, reviews, and other resources.