I'm pushing myself back into posting...
A few months ago, I had the pleasure of meeting the most recently minted Newbery winner, Kwame Alexander. A very cool dude and a brilliant author/poet who took an hour+ to hang out with a few writers-of-color at the annual SCBWI conference in NYC. He waved two sparks that must spread like wildfire:
1. We have a responsibility (opportunity) to envision "the world that we want." I truly agree with that framework for thinking about both the beauty and the dire stakes of storycraft.
2. We can't embrace diversity in YA without living and reading it. I take this for granted as a teacher in NYC public education, but it's so vital. I must read more.
Check out his Newbery Medal winning book, The Crossover.