#OwnVoices Promotes Diversity In Books

#OwnVoices Promotes Diversity In Books

YouTubers use their voices to promote diversity in authors and books.
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On YouTube, there is a community of people that discuss books. We call these people, fittingly, BookTubers. They've always been around, but have been starting to be recognized more widely online, allowing them panels at various conventions such as VidCon.

Recently, they've been using their voices to promote diversity in books. Notable figures are Whitney Atkinson of WhittyNovels, who recently released a video explaining just what #ownvoices is, and Emma of emmmabooks, who has some twitter threads on diversity and a specific thread on diversity in publication and an upcoming release, Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth.

Atkinson's video can be watched here, and Emma's thread on Carve the Mark can be found here.

"I'm white, I am also cisgendered, heterosexual, and able-bodied," Atkinson said in her video on #ownvoices. "In every book I've read, and every TV show I've watched, or any other media consumed, I have been able to locate a person or maybe an entire cast of people that represent me."

"No matter what, there's always going to be a white person, there's always going to be a straight person, there's always going to be someone I can see myself in because in media and literature, this white, cisgendered, heterosexual person is the norm," Atkinson said. She later corrected herself and said that there usually is, instead of always.

Atkinson goes on to explain that #ownvoices is a discussion and movement in the book community to promote diverse literature written by diverse authors who have the experience of marginalization.

She points out that accuracy is important when reading about diverse characters because if, for example, a white author writes about a black man, they don't have the perspective as a black man and can really only go off stereotype rather than experience, which can be problematic.

In her video, Atkinson includes testimonials from people that have been affected by the #OwnVoices movement and thus solidified its importance in the book community.

From a personal standpoint, I never realized how few diverse books I've read in my lifetime and hope to turn to #ownvoices to change that and support diverse authors. I tip my hat to you, Whitney, for using your voice to point out what others may not have even realized.

In today's community, diversity is important in all aspects. It is crucial that people of different skin tone, sexuality, gender, body-ability have the same opportunities as everyone else, so they have a chance to tell their story and tell it accurately.

Note: In the description of Atkinson's video there is a list of diverse authors, bloggers, and videos to help further your research on #OwnVoices.


Cover Image Credit: feministing.com

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​An Open Letter To The People Who Don’t Tip Their Servers

This one's for you.
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Dear Person Who Has No Idea How Much The 0 In The “Tip:" Line Matters,

I want to by asking you a simple question: Why?

Is it because you can't afford it? Is it because you are blind to the fact that the tip you leave is how the waiter/waitress serving you is making their living? Is it because you're just lazy and you “don't feel like it"?

Is it because you think that, while taking care of not only your table but at least three to five others, they took too long bringing you that side of ranch dressing? Or is it just because you're unaware that as a server these people make $2.85 an hour plus TIPS?

The average waiter/waitress is only supposed to be paid $2.13 an hour plus tips according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

That then leaves the waiter/waitress with a paycheck with the numbers **$0.00** and the words “Not a real paycheck." stamped on it. Therefore these men and women completely rely on the tips they make during the week to pay their bills.

So, with that being said, I have a few words for those of you who are ignorant enough to leave without leaving a few dollars in the “tip:" line.

Imagine if you go to work, the night starts off slow, then almost like a bomb went off the entire workplace is chaotic and you can't seem to find a minute to stop and breathe, let alone think about what to do next.

Imagine that you are helping a total of six different groups of people at one time, with each group containing two to 10 people.

Imagine that you are working your ass off to make sure that these customers have the best experience possible. Then you cash them out, you hand them a pen and a receipt, say “Thank you so much! It was a pleasure serving you, have a great day!"

Imagine you walk away to attempt to start one of the 17 other things you need to complete, watch as the group you just thanked leaves, and maybe even wave goodbye.

Imagine you are cleaning up the mess that they have so kindly left behind, you look down at the receipt and realize there's a sad face on the tip line of a $24.83 bill.

Imagine how devastated you feel knowing that you helped these people as much as you could just to have them throw water on the fire you need to complete the night.

Now, realize that whenever you decide not to tip your waitress, this is nine out of 10 times what they go through. I cannot stress enough how important it is for people to realize that this is someone's profession — whether they are a college student, a single mother working their second job of the day, a new dad who needs to pay off the loan he needed to take out to get a safer car for his child, your friend, your mom, your dad, your sister, your brother, you.

If you cannot afford to tip, do not come out to eat. If you cannot afford the three alcoholic drinks you gulped down, plus your food and a tip do not come out to eat.

If you cannot afford the $10 wings that become half-off on Tuesdays plus that water you asked for, do not come out to eat.

If you cannot see that the person in front of you is working their best to accommodate you, while trying to do the same for the other five tables around you, do not come out to eat. If you cannot realize that the man or woman in front of you is a real person, with their own personal lives and problems and that maybe these problems have led them to be the reason they are standing in front of you, then do not come out to eat.

As a server myself, it kills me to see the people around me being deprived of the money that they were supposed to earn. It kills me to see the three dollars you left on a $40 bill. It kills me that you cannot stand to put yourself in our shoes — as if you're better than us. I wonder if you realize that you single-handedly ruined part of our nights.

I wonder if maybe one day you will be in our shoes, and I hope to God no one treats you how you have treated us. But if they do, then maybe you'll realize how we felt when you left no tip after we gave you our time.

Cover Image Credit: Hailea Shallock

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10 TV Shows You Need To Watch On Hulu

Hulu is slept on

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I have recently moved to watch shows and movies on Hulu and Netflix. Hulu has a lot of great shows and movies to offer that aren't on Netflix. While Netflix is still great, Hulu is definitely starting to grow on me. Here are some shows that I have watched or have started watching on Hulu that I think are pretty great!

1. 11.22.63

farm2.staticflickr.com

If you love James Franco and Stephen King, you'll love this show. The first episode is a bit long, but all the other episodes are only 45 minutes. The plot line is pretty interesting. I also like that it doesn't tell you everything, it shows it to you and you piece things together.

2. The Act

The fact that this show is based on a true story is just insane. The acting is really great, especially if you watch actual videos of Gypsy, Joey King does a great job.

3. Castle Rock

Another Stephen King masterpiece. This show is riveting and really makes you think about what the truth is in the context of the story, and brings in some ethical questions.

4. Future Man

I've only recently started this but it's pretty interesting and funny.

5. The O.C.

The O.C. (TV Series 2003–2007) - IMDb

www.imdb.com

This show was great. Sometimes it was a bit annoying, but it is a classic show from the early 2000s. You really become invested in all the characters and your opinion may change on some characters because they grow and develop throughout the show.

6. The Handmaid's Tale

If you've read the book, you should definitely watch the show.

7. Obsession: Dark Desires

https://www.hulu.com/

I just love true crime stories and this really dives deep into crime stories and the darkest parts of humanity.

8. Intervention

This show can be really sad or frustrating, but I think it's good for people to see the reality of addiction.

9. Smallville

Smallville (2001-2011)

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I also started this one very recently and I've always wanted to watch it. It can be cheesy but it's pretty entertaining.

10. Brooklyn Nine-Nine

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This is a great show if you want to laugh. I love all of the characters and everything they bring to the table.

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