Oh, NOW You Did It! Or Did You? – THE RACE CARD IN WRITING

Dan Alatorre

I don't want to offend anyone! I don’t want to offend anyone!

What color are your characters?

What race?

“a tall black guy cooked at a large grill set on the sidewalk”

  • I get that you want to show diversity but describing skin color like that is a slippery slope. From what I can see you’re only doing it with non-white characters…

(That ridiculous observation is not from me, by the way.)

Race is tricky, my friend. It can be very awkward to show how open minded you are and how inclusive you are when you try to explain to a reader that different characters are of different races – without saying what color their skin is and sounding like a complete racist!

Well, maybe that last one... I can do that.

You can do it, but it’s hard. And sometimes it sounds stupid.

Is somebody black? Are you going to try the old “chocolate colored” repartee? Or mocha?…

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