We Need Diverse Books

WNDB Anthology Collaborations with Random House Children's Books

WNDB anthologies feature original stories by award-winning authors and exciting new voices, thus supporting their goal to provide more diversity in children’s literature. Flying Lessons & Other Stories released in 2017, and Fresh Ink released in 2018. There is a third, middle-grade anthology in the works with the title The Hero Next Door.

With each anthology WNDB has hosted a short-story contest for a spot in the book by an unpublished diverse author. The winner receives payment of $1,000 US, and the contests are open to diverse authors who are previously unpublished in any format.

The Hero Next Door

The Hero Next Door By Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich

Not all heroes wear capes. Some heroes teach martial arts. Others talk to ghosts. A few are inventors or soccer players. They’re also sisters, neighbors, and friends. Because heroes come in many shapes and sizes. But they all have one thing in common: they make the world a better place.

Published in partnership with We Need Diverse Books, this vibrant anthology features thirteen acclaimed authors whose powerful and diverse voices show how small acts of kindness can save the day. So pay attention, because a hero could be right beside you. Or maybe the hero is you.

Flying Lessons & Other Stories

Flying Lessons & Other Stories By Ellen Oh

In a partnership with We Need Diverse Books, industry giants Kwame Alexander, Soman Chainani, Matt de la Peña, Tim Federle, Grace Lin, Meg Medina, Walter Dean Myers, Tim Tingle, and Jacqueline Woodson join newcomer Kelly J. Baptist in a story collection that is as humorous as it is heartfelt. This impressive group of authors has earned among them every major award in children’s publishing and popularity as New York Times bestsellers. From these distinguished authors come ten distinct and vibrant stories.

Fresh Ink

Fresh Ink By Lamar Giles

Careful–you are holding fresh ink. And not hot-off-the-press, still-drying-in-your-hands ink. Instead, you are holding twelve stories with endings that are still being written–whose next chapters are up to you.

Because these stories are meant to be read. And shared.

Thirteen of the most accomplished YA authors deliver a label-defying anthology that includes ten short stories, a graphic novel, and a one-act play about topics like gentrification, acceptance, untimely death, coming out, and poverty and ranging in genre from contemporary realistic fiction to adventure and romance. This collection will inspire you to break conventions, bend the rules, and color outside the lines. All you need is fresh ink.

About We Need Diverse Books

From the We Need Diverse Books website:

We Need Diverse Books™ is a 501(c)(3) non-profit and a grassroots organization of children’s book lovers that advocates essential changes in the publishing industry. Our aim is to help produce and promote literature that reflects and honors the lives of all young people.

Our Mission Statement

Putting more books featuring diverse characters into the hands of all children.

Our Vision

A world in which all children can see themselves in the pages of a book.

Our Definition of Diversity

We recognize all diverse experiences, including (but not limited to) LGBTQIA, Native, people of color, gender diversity, people with disabilities*, and ethnic, cultural, and religious minorities.

*We subscribe to a broad definition of disability, which includes but is not limited to physical, sensory, cognitive, intellectual, or developmental disabilities, chronic conditions, and mental illnesses (this may also include addiction). Furthermore, we subscribe to a social model of disability, which presents disability as created by barriers in the social environment, due to lack of equal access, stereotyping, and other forms of marginalization.