Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Astonishing True Story of the Retrograde Horizon Cover

I’m a green-eyed blonde of mysterious origins.

I wrote an epic science fiction adventure series

I needed a character whose job was to be the protagonist’s obstacle.

I came up with a mature black female secret agent, and temporarily named her “Blocker.”

Meanwhile, I’m on 23andMe due to curiosity vis-à-vis mysterious origins, and at one point it was ascribing me a small percentage of sub-Saharan African (i.e. black) ancestry at about the greatgrandma level in the middle of a lot of Celt. It's no longer displaying that in my results, which I take it to mean that the state of the art is evolving.

Occasionally I find genetic cousins.

One day I heard from a black cousin.

23andMe confirms we share a common ancestor at approximately the greatgrandma level regardless of the sub-Saharan genetics discussed above.

I emailed with my cousin, then we became Facebook friends and shared photos.

There is a distinct facial resemblance.

Cousin, knowledgeable re history and geneology (has traced her own lineage back to free people of color on the East Coast in the 1600s), speculates a light-skinned child from her side of the family “passed” and married into my side of the family (yes, we both realize there are less cheerful possibilities).

Cousin’s name just happens to be Blocker.

I decided to keep my character’s name as Blocker. Now I have a genetic relative hanging out in my own science fictional future despite my own lack of descendants, hooray.  

While writing my third book, I encountered numerous articles about “whitewashing.” 

So I had a “bite me, you corporate publishing weasels” moment.

I commissioned a cover with Special Agent Blocker right smack in the middle of it. Dammit.  

Wielding a huge ass gun. Maybe that'll make the conservatives happy too.

Now I could give you some song and dance about how you can stick it to the man and/or the SJWs (or both) by buying my book and making it so successful that corporate publishers take heed and start putting armed black ladies on every book that comes out, and in fact you might have thought I was headed there all along, but I suck at marketing and I could never do that. 

Or I could do some kind of spiritual take and start yattering about destiny and fate and psychic blah blah blah, but I’m not really interested in going there either.

Instead, I think I’ll just leave you with this.

Be nice to your fellow humans, because we are all connected, and viewing the world from that perspective will make you a better and happier person. 

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