F115. Representing Responsibly: We Need Diverse Books—Authors on the Challenges of Writing Diversity for Kids and Teens

Room 205 A&B, Level 2
Friday, April 10, 2015
9:00 am to 10:15 am


How do you change the (very white) face of children's literature? Through great storytelling. Because if there's one thing kids and teens hate, it's a lecture. The writers here are integrating issues of race, class, sexuality, gender, and/or ability, while still emphasizing the importance of narrative. This discussion, lead by #WeNeedDiverseBooks team members, will center on how to include diverse elements while putting the focus squarely on quality storytelling.



Sona Charaipotra is an entertainment journalist and the co-founder of CAKE Literary, a diversity-driven boutique book packaging company whose first project, Tiny Pretty Things, is her debut novel with writing partner Dhonielle Clayton.

Sarah is a YA author, mentor to teen writers, and a mod for DiversifYA.com. Her debut, The Last Leaves Falling, is set in contemporary Japan.

Bryce Leung is a computer engineer and novelist. Little Miss Evil is his debut middle-grade super-villain thriller, which is co-authored with his wife Kristy Shen. He attained his BASc at the University of Waterloo, his MEng at University of Toronto, and is a proud member of #WeNeedDiverseBooks.

Renee Ahdieh is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is the author of the young adult novel The Wrath and the Dawn. In her spare time, she likes to cook, travel, and dance salsa.

Kristy Shen is a practicing computer engineer at a major Canadian bank by day and a children's author by night. She is also a proud senior contributor to the #WeNeedDiverseBooks campaign. She just debuted her first novel Little Miss Evil.


March 4–7, 2020
San Antonio, TX

Henry B. González Convention Center