By Dennis Abrams | @DennisAbrams2
‘A Network of Book Professionals’Amid observances of the US’ Hispanic Heritage Month, the Latinx in Publishing group has launched its website and online community dedicated to supporting “Latino/a/x” book professionals, authors and diversity in the book business.
The “x” formulation of the term Latinx (“Latino/a/x”) reflects the group’s intention of an gender-inclusive stance in its membership and activities.
Antonio Gonzalez, senior marketing manager at Scholastic and a member of the Latinx steering committee, is quoted in news release materials, saying, “We are living in an exciting era during which grassroots online movements like #OwnVoices and #WeNeedDiverseBooks are shaping how we approach diversity and multiculturalism in the books we edit, acquire, and publish.”
Pablo de la Vega, agent at Indent Literary Agency and Latinx steering committee member, says, “Latinx in Publishing has been constantly meeting and growing over the last year and we’re thrilled to finally launch our official Web site and invite the larger community to get involved.”
A launch event in New York City on October 13 will feature industry professionals and readings from bestselling and award-winning novelists, including:
- Zoraida Córdova, the author of YA fantasy novels including Labyrinth Lost (Sourcebooks Fire);
- Nancy Mercado, the author of It Concerns the Madness and the forthcoming Please Postpone my Death, as well as editor of the children’s anthology, if the world were mine and the Nuyorican Women Writers Anthology;
- Duke University’s Lori Carlson Hijuelos, editor of young-adult anthologies and novels and and she will also be representing her late husband, Pulitzer Prize-winning Oscar Hijuelos (Twain & Stanley Enter Paradise, Hatchette);
- David Unger, a Guatemalan novelist awarded the Miguel Ángel Asturias National Prize in Literature whose latest novel is The Mastermind (Akashic); and
- Theresa Valera, an award-winning Puerto Rican author and member of Las Comadres para las Americas.
More from Gonzalez:
“Right now more than ever, the book industry urgently needs groups like Latinx in Publishing—not only to advocate for Latino voices within the pages we read and bring to the market…[but also] to strengthen the industry’s understanding of what it means to be Latinx, or Hispanic, or Chicano, or Puerto Rican, and so on in today’s America—beyond that we exist to fortify ourselves as working professionals in this business. This group is a steady reminder that we are not alone on this journey.”
Members of Latinx benefit from the community through shared resources, support, and mentorship. In addition to networking, Latinx in Publishing also hosts professional development events, live in NYC and online, and has a strong position in favor of promoting diversity.