The one thing I have noticed growing up is that the fantasy fiction world is often very white. They were always characters that I love or identified with to some extent but none of them were ever truly like me. This is not a dig at authors I love but merely a statement about how representation is an important thing.
For Imitatore, I wanted a fantasy world that I identified with. I wanted characters like me and like other black people that I know. I would say people of color but the characters in Imitatore are all different shades of black. It was something I thought about heavily and when I had first started writing this novel, I’ll be honest none of my characters were black. I wanted to fit in with the genre that I loved so much but as I grew older, I slowly realized I wanted to do the opposite. I wanted to break the mold, I wanted to write a story that I know people want to read. Well maybe I don’t know that people want to read it but a girl can hope that they do.
So here we are now, with characters that have complexities and truly develop and are not just token black characters for the masses. Representation is what I am aiming for but I also just want the story to be fun. I am of firm belief that not every black book has to be about struggle and strife, sometimes it can just be about magical and superpowered black people. Imitatore is all of that and I hope it is more than that. I honestly hope that someday you all get to read it and see it in the same way that I do. Maybe you won’t, maybe it will be absolutely terrible and honestly, I am alright with that too. Even if what I have written never catches on to the masses, I know I have written something that needs to exist.