Thirty years ago a group of women mystery writers got together and realized that writing mysteries was a man’s game. At least, that’s how it seemed. So these ladies banded together and founded Sisters in Crime. The purpose, to level the playing field. Demonstrate that quality mysteries were a matter of writing, not author gender. And yes, for those who wonder, misters in crime are welcome. If you’re not a member, you should consider joining.
Those of you who read mysteries may have noticed that SinC has been successful in its mission. These days mysteries of all degree, from light humorous cozies to hard boiled noir are as likely to be written by a woman as a man. Thirty years into the fight, it would be arrogant to say SinC’s accomplished its goals, there is always more to be done, but arguably, it has demonstrated a good bit of success.
Not being on the board of SinC, I can’t speak to how the idea came about, but the sisters undertook to conduct a survey of the membership. The survey’s purpose, to open a conversation on diversity in the mystery writing world. The report, the 2016 Summit Report on Diversity titled Report for Change is available on the SinC webpage. The results of the Report are eye-opening.
Read it for yourself. Get the conversation going. Would you opt not to read a mystery because of the racial background or sexual orientation of the author or the characters?
We’ve come a long way, and we’ve a fair piece to go.
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