05/21/2014 09:38 am ET Updated May 21, 2014

Literature Still Urgently Needs More Non-White, Non-Male Heroes

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One of the most celebrated pieces of advice to writers is “Write what you know.” Unfortunately, it shows.

The demographics of published writers in the West are largely homogeneous, and as a result, our literature is also largely homogeneous. Growing up, for example, my heroes were Atreju, Frodo, and Paul Atreides. All I ever really wanted to do was go on adventures like them. I readily identified with them, and their trials became my scripture: the loss of Artax, the recovery at Lothlórien, the knife fight with Feyd-Rautha.

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