Mat Johnson, found via a link on Nichelle Tramble's blog. (For the record, I vote that Nichelle keep blogging.) Mat has some interesting posts about commercial fiction, self-publishing and the state of the black literati - and yes his site is called Niggerati. Talk amongst yourselves about that one - perhaps there's a Michael Richards joke in there somewhere. I haven't read all of Mat's posts, but found the one I did read (#3) to be provocative. Are the self-published, so-called ghetto lit authors working on the craft? Does it matter if they still sell?
And speaking of selling, I have a 99% unread copy of B-More Careful available really cheap. I bought it to check out the craze and just could not even force myself to read it. So if the author is working on the craft, I'll never see the work, since I will not risk the money again.
Anyway, Mat's work looks cool, and I'm particularly interested in the Walter White-inspired graphic novel coming out next year. I'll have to get some of his work - talk in comments about it if you're familiar with his writing.
Also stumbled into Felicia Pride's blog and she had a post about a WSJ article about black authors. I'm not a suscriber, so I'll have to go to the hard copy tomorrow. Here's what's available on their site as a preview for non-subscribers:
Why Book Industry Sees the World Split Still by Race
By Jeffrey A. Trachtenberg
Word Count: 1,851 Companies Featured in This Article: CBS, Borders Group, Wal-Mart Stores, Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, Pearson
Brandon Massey's readers tell him they know just where to find his horror novels -- in the African-American section of bookstores. He's torn about whether or not this is a good thing.
"You face a double-edged sword," says Mr. Massey, 33 years old. "I'm black and I'm published by a black imprint, so I'm automatically slotted in African-American fiction." That helps black readers to find his books easily and has underpinned his career. At the same time, he says, the placement "limits my sales."
Should fiction written by black authors be shelved in African-American departments, a move that often helps ....
And no, Felicia, you're not the only one:
Am I the only one that hadn't heard about Angela Bassett and her husband's
Courtney Vance's new book entitled, Friends: A Love Story? It's being published
by Harlequin/Kimani Press this January