By Dee Stewart
"Too much is given, much is required." Luke 12:48
I want to believe that Christian Publishing is better than mainstream publishing, but it's getting harder to believe by the year, which is sort of sad since this year has just begun. Yet within eleven days into 2010 I have heard some heart-breaking stories from published Christian authors that blow my mind. And what I read from literary agents blogs, Christian publishing event planners emails, and what Christian readers are buzzing about on Facebook it gets worse. The distance between Christian Publishing and mainstream has gotten shorter, not regarding content, but on what it deems is worthy.
One constant in particular...placing African American authors in the Publishing Ghetto. Huffington Post Leonce Gaiter describes this ghetto as black imprints when he rips into Publishing Weekly article "African-American Books in Today's Marketplace" with his counter "Rejecting the Publishing Ghetto."
However, the PG goes deeper than that. It's not just the creation of separate, but not equal imprints, but it is also a mindset that African-American's letters aren't universal, marketable, noteworthy to Americans, all of them. So from the onset--even before we query an agent or editor, even before we write a word--there is an understood that our works are of little value.
For Christian Writers this Ghetto mentality also means that our works are no value to The Kingdom.
And I refuse to believe that, although I continue to receive more evidence to the contrary.
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