Why We Need Diverse Characters In YA Books, According To Angie Thomas

    The author of The Hate U Give spoke to BuzzFeed about being inclusive when it comes to writing for children.

    Angie Thomas is the No. 1 New York Times best-selling author of The Hate U Give, which was released earlier this year. The Hate U Give, according to Thomas, "is about 16-year-old Starr, who lives in two different worlds — the mostly poor, black neighborhood where she lives and the mostly white, upper-class private school she attends. The struggle of being two different people in two different worlds becomes even harder after she witnesses a cop killing her childhood best friend, Khalil, who was unarmed. And what she does or doesn't come forward to say could change her community, and it could end their lives."

    BuzzFeed caught up with Thomas to discuss writing diversely when it comes to writing for children. Here are her wise thoughts.

    1. Be real with your writing, go there, and write the stories you're afraid to write.

    2. Marginalized writers should tell their stories authentically.

    3. Writers shouldn't write diverse books just because they think it's a trend.

    4. If you're going to write outside of your marginalization, approach it with care.

    5. Do the research.

    6. Not every story is our story to tell, and that's OK.

    7. Sensitivity readers play an important role in creating.

    8. Humble yourself to a certain extent and ask for help.

    9. Ask yourself: Why am I the person to tell this story?