Letters to a Writer of Color

Deepa Anappara and Taymour Soomro, editors
Published in 2023
by Random House

Encouraging readers to reevaluate the codes and conventions that shape assumptions about how fiction should be written, and for whom, this collection of essays covers more than the writer’s craft. In essays by authors such as Kiese Laymon, Sharlene Teo, Madeleine Thien, and Tiphanie Yanique, as well as a conversation between Nadifa Mohamed and Leila Aboulela, Letters to a Writer of Color offers the start of a more inclusive discussion about storytelling. Taymour Soomro cautions writers—and readers—to resist rigid stories about who they are; Tahmima Anam writes about giving herself permission to be funny; and Deepa Anappara describes the importance of writing through conditions that impede the creation of art. “We need more stories from more cultures, races, communities, and nations to dismantle structures that suppress difference and to challenge the perception that difference is failure,” the editors write. “This book is not, and shouldn’t be, the last word on the subject.”