One year ago we started Black Christian Reads and my blogpost, which kicked off the group, was called “We Are Here.” It’s a phrase that is loaded with meaning as far as Black Christian authors are concerned, because the publishing industry still has a hard time seeing that we exist. In a year that pushed for more diversity in publishing offerings, it was good to see a new imprint. A high point of the year was the start of Brown Girls Faith at Brown Girls Publishing, headed by the stellar Rhonda McKnight. She was also interviewed for an article in Library Journal about the status of Christian fiction in 2015. I was happy to see Rhonda’s remarks in such a prominent publishing journal because it meant that Black Christian Fiction had some visibility.
The erasure still seems apparent in some other places. In the February 2016 issue of Romantic Times, a reader named Valarie Jackson sent in a letter that asked why more African American authors didn’t appear in the pages of the magazine to be reviewed. The authors she named were primarily Black Christian Authors. Ms. Jackson may not know me that well, but on the advantageous side, the third book in my “Migrations of the Heart” series had been reviewed well the month before. The cover of A Treasure of Gold won best cover of the month for November and place third for best cover of the year. The Romantic Times cover in November featured my publisher with a montage of covers and A Virtuous Ruby was there. So there have been opportunities and blessings.
As we head into 2016, the work of letting everyone know that we are all God’s children and are precious in His sight is not over yet. The work continues. We are still here and will use the blessings He has bestowed on us to continue His work.
Book three in the “Home to Milford College” series, The Representative’s Revolt, was just released exclusively on Amazon.