Dreda Say Mitchell on the apparent demand that black authors write only about black issues:
It’s clear from James’s writing that he’s not just a “writer of colour” either – no black author is.
If he wants to insist on the right of authors of any background to tell the stories they want to tell, in the way they want to tell them, he is unlikely to get an argument from anyone. But it’s important to get the context straight. As things currently stand, black writers are under pressure to be urban rather than suburban. Perhaps Marlon James could help everyone out by using his status to question why that is and what everyone involved in publishing can do about it.
Precious little, love, if non-urban books by black authors don’t sell because the readers don’t like ‘em.