Special Re-Release: Glory Edim, WELL-READ BLACK GIRL

Special Re-Release: Glory Edim, WELL-READ BLACK GIRL

Zibby Owens: I’m here today with Glory Edim who’s the founder of Well-Read Black Girl, a Brooklyn-based book club and online community that celebrates the uniqueness of black literature and sisterhood. In the fall of 2017, she organized the first ever Well-Read Black Girl literary festival. She’s the editor of the anthology Well-Read Black Girl: Finding Our Stories, Discovering Ourselves. Glory has a background in startups and creative institutions including Kickstarter, the Webby Awards, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. She received the 2017 Innovator’s Award from the Los Angeles Book Prizes for her work as a literature advocate. She serves on the board of New York City’s Housing Works bookstore. She currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Welcome, Glory. Thanks for coming on “Moms Don’t Have Time to Read Books.”

Glory Edim: Thanks for having me.

Zibby: Of course. Well-Read Black Girl: Finding Our Stories, Discovering Ourselves, tell me about this book.

Glory: This all started from me developing this community, Well-Read Black Girl, online. I had this love for books that I had read in my childhood and at my college, Howard University. I wanted to share that same feeling of being this well-read, educated, vivacious, curious black girl in the world. I felt like there weren’t enough representations of black characters. By starting a book club, starting this online platform on Instagram and Twitter, I was able to pull everyone together. We were just sharing the love of our first books, whether it was Toni Morrison or Alice Walker or Maya Angelou. We were having these great conversations about what it means to be in a black woman in the world and what it means to be sometimes feelings a little bit isolated and how we can come together and change the perceptions of what it meant to be a black woman. It really, really started because my partner made me this shirt that said Well-Read Black Girl. I would wear it on the subway. People would start having conversations with me and talking to me. I was like, there is something here. I want to really elaborate and expand what this means to be a well-read person. Now it’s turned into this whole literary movement from that one shirt and that one idea. It’s really grown into this whole other new experience.

Zibby: Take me step by step. You wear the T-shirt. People keep coming up to you on the subway. Then what happened? Then you decided to make an Instagram account?

Glory: Yeah. My background has always been in marketing and media. I studied broadcast journalism at Howard. I’ve always loved writing. I never, until recently — now I’m calling myself a writer and editor. I was just always someone who was passionate about literature and creative writing. I’m wearing this shirt and having these conversations. Instagram was a new medium that I was playing around with and I was curious about.

Zibby: When was this?

Glory: 2015. My birthday’s in December, so the December of 2015 my partner got me the shirt. Then in 2016 in the spring, I actually started the book club. The first book club actually was not a book by a black woman. We read Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me. I just had maybe eight or ten people, friends of mine. It was both men and women. We were talking about the book. Ta-Nehisi’s also alumni of Howard University. We were just moved by the storytelling and the structure and our experiences at Howard. There were a couple of book club attendees that were also alumni. It was this really great, fun experience. Also, I was new to New York, which is a big thing too. I had just moved from DC where I’m originally from. I was craving fellowship and trying to meet new people. A book club just felt like the easiest way to gather new people. When you’re in a book club, it’s a little bit comfortable to talk to a stranger. You’re like, okay, our common bond here is this book, and we can go beyond that. That’s how it happened.

Zibby: Where did you have the book club?

Glory: At the time, I was working in Dumbo. There was a space. It was a book space. It’s Books. They have space in Dumbo. We hosted it there. I had a friend who had access to that space. We hosted it there. It was really great. After that experience, it was like, okay, I want to do this again. I was reading called The Star Side of Bird Hill which was the debut book of Naomi Jackson. She is a native of Brooklyn. She’s also from the Caribbean. The book is beautifully written. It talks about these two young girls who — their mother experiences depression and all these unexpected circumstances. Suddenly, they have to move from their home in Brooklyn. They have to move with their grandmother in the Caribbean. It’s a beautiful coming-of-age story. I read that book. Then I went to Greenlight Bookstore where Naomi was signing the books. At this time, I probably had less than a hundred people on my Instagram, but I was kind of documenting everything. I showed her my Instagram. I was like, “I really love your book. It’s beautifully written. Me and some friends are going to gather for a book club. Would you like to join us?”

Naomi was the first person to come to the official Well-Read Black Girl book club. I did a newsletter and invited people. I wasn’t thinking too many people would come. I was like, if someone sees this and they join, great. Again, I didn’t have these really high expectations. I just was like, I’m going to do it to see. She came. She said yes immediately. It was so beautiful. She came and not only did she talk about the book, but she talked about her experience as a writer, being in MFA programs, her writing process, all these things that I wasn’t expecting. A lot of the women that attended were aspiring writers. They were also from the same area that she was from. Again, we’re talking about the book, but it spins off into these other beautiful conversations about identity and about motherhood. I have a really complicated relationship with my mom, so there were themes in the book that stood out to me and resonated with other readers.

That was the one, the book club that really solidified, okay, book club for sure, inviting the author to join us, having it be a debut author because that also added to the eagerness of her joining us. It was her first book. She was really excited that this group of black women had come to rally behind her and were supporting her. It was this reciprocal love for both of us. Now Naomi and I are great friends. It really just started from that one moment where I was like, “Do you want to come to my book club?” at Greenlight. I would’ve never predicted it would’ve morphed into this whole other thing simply because I had the courage to say, “Do you want to? Can you join us?” Luckily, I had that very special moment documented because my partner is a filmmaker. He was like, “Oh, this is cool. I’ll record a little bit.” He did a little bit of video of all of us talking and Naomi. He put it together almost like a little trailer of the book club. We were kind of playing with it as just a creative side project that we were doing together since he made the shirt for me, and my love for books. Well-Read Black Girl is a little bit of a nickname for what he calls because I’m always reading. Especially before we go to sleep, I’m like, “Don’t talk to me. I’m just going to read a little bit before bed.” That’s how it started from that one question.

Zibby: Wow. Now you have an agreement with the ABA? You have these pop-ups everywhere.

Glory: Yes. At one point, I was like, this is growing beyond me. I want to make sure that indie bookstores are represented. I wanted to make sure that this was something — because I love independent bookstores. I’m from DC, so Politics and Prose is one of my favorite bookstores in DC. Now in New York, I tend to go to Greenlight a lot as well as WORD and Books Are Magic. I love independent bookstores. That’s how I buy my books. ABA is the American Booksellers Association. I was at a conference and I was talking to one of their lead strategists about how I could expand. She was like, “You know what? We should do a partnership.” Her name is Joy. She’s just amazing. Now she’s their COO, I believe. You can fact-check that for me. Joy’s so amazing. She was like, “We work with every single bookstore in the country. Why don’t we do a partnership where you share your recommendations and we can work directly with the bookstores and the booksellers.” I was like, okay, great. We did a pilot. We figured out how to do a newsletter. I went to their Winter Institute this year, which was awesome. Everyone is just so excited.

It ranges from bookstores in West Hollywood like Book Soup to small bookstores in Maine or in Atlanta, Chicago. I’m giving them the books, but they’re able to adapt and make the book clubs fit their community. For example, one book club, it’s a Well-Read Black Girl book club, but they’re really focused on teens. They do all YA books. They read stories that I suggest, but they also sometimes pick some classics and adapt it to what they’re interested in. I’ve gone to visit some of the bookstores. I went to Detroit to go visit the booksellers at Sourcebooks, which is really awesome. I’m in LA a lot, so I love visiting Book Soup. They’ve found a really great way to integrate it into their marketing. They do a lot of social media. Everyone kind of does their own thing with it, but it’s still under the banner of Well-Read Black Girl.

The focus is still supporting black women writers as well as non-binary writers and writers of color. It’s really about pushing the diversity initiative in a way that feels genuine and really is making real change. You can see the conversations. You can see the bodies in the bookstore that are introducing new communities. Some bookstores have started partnerships with schools and community centers. People are being innovate about how to introduce new diverse books into their stores, into their communities. It’s not just about saying, “We have this cover where there’s a lovely person of color on the cover.” It’s more than that. It’s actually introducing these books and having conversations and dialogue. It’s really community driven, intergenerational as well. I love the fact that moms and daughters come in together and they have conversations. Again, it’s something I could not have predicted. That conversation with Joy really changed my perspective on how I could expand and how I could grow. I still do a lot of this stuff by myself, myself and some volunteers. I’m still trying to figure out the infrastructure of the business. ABA has been an awesome partnership. It’s been so cool.

Zibby: Tell me about the literary festival.

Glory: Oh, my gosh. So much to talk about. Two years in, in 2017 after the book club had been going and it had been pretty consistent for two years, I decided that I wanted to do another thing. I was like, we should do a festival. This idea came about because I was having a conversation with Tayari Jones. I’m a huge fan of her work. I had the opportunity to meet her at a gala where I was there because of Toni Morrison. We were honoring Toni Morrison. It was the Authors Guild Gala. It was the first fancy event I was going to as a Well-Read Black Girl representative. I was very shy. Of course, I was kind of waving in the corner. I was bowing down to Miss Morrison. Tayari just came up to me. We started having a conversation. She was so warm and glowing. I’m fangirling inside kind of doing cartwheels because I love this author. I’ve read all her books. I love Silver Sparrow. At that time, she had not published American Marriage yet. It was just about to come about.

Zibby: I loved that book, by the way. Loved that book.

Glory: So incredible. So incredible. Her presence and her warmth is just — she’s like sun. She just fills you with so much warmth. I met her and immediately felt like I had a new friend. We were having this conversation. We decided to share a cab home together because we were uptown and we were going back to Brooklyn together. In that car, we were having this great conversation. I told her this idea. I was like, “I think at one point I want to do a literary festival.” Again, it was 2017. I was planning for next year. She looked at me like, “You should do it this year.” I was like, “I don’t know. I don’t think I could do it. I’d have to do a keynote. I’d have to do all this stuff. I don’t know if I have the time and energy to plan a festival in six months.” She was like, “No, you can do it.” She’s like, “I’ll come. I’ll be one of the main people. I’ll help you.” I was just like, what? Again, we had just met. I was like, oh, my god, I don’t know. That’s a lot. She was just so adamant about it. Her passion, her excitement gave me confidence that I could do it. I was like, okay. Two weeks later, I planned a Kickstarter. I did a crowdfunding campaign. I reached out to the authors that had already participated in the book club in the past to see if they were available to be part of it. Everyone was so gracious. The community was on board. It worked. We ended up raising like $30,000. We had Tayari there. We had Jacqueline Woodson. We had Morgan Jerkins. We had Ashley Ford. All these people I definitely considered amazing authors, and friends now. Throughout the years we’ve grown —

Zibby: — You’re going to have to connect me to some of these people who I would be dying to have on this podcast.

Glory: Oh, my god, amazing. Yes, of course.

Zibby: Thank you. We’ll regroup after.

Glory: All these amazing people were in the room. We were having this conversation. Then thankfully, there was amazing press too. It just was this movement that everything was kind of falling into place. That was in 2017. We just did our third festival last year in 2019. I added a second day. I added a family day because moms, you know. It’s so important to help the moms and the kids, and so I added a family day this year. I just can’t wait. I can’t wait. I’m trying to figure out this year. I’m still doing logistics like the venue and stuff. We’re going to have it in November. It’s going to be great. I’m excited about year four, but I think year five is really going to be it. Five is our big year. We’re going to plan even — it’s been great. Outside of the book clubs, the festival is really our banner event. Everyone comes in. It feels like a big family reunion of sorts. Now I’ve been able to find a way to really produce it in a way where I understand how things work now. I’m really focusing on genre. I’ve invited a lot of academics to participate. This year, we had Saidiya Hartman come, which was so inspiring. Her book, Wayward Lives, really changed the way I’ve been looking at how one uses the archive and how we can tell our histories through preserving images and photos of the past. It just has opened up my mind. So many great things. That’s the festival.

Zibby: Amazing. This is a silly question, but how inclusive versus exclusive is this event to all races? I’m obviously not black. I’m white, but this sounds like an amazing event. I’d want to take my kids to the family day. Is it only for black people?

Glory: It’s a space that is centered on the stories and narratives of black women and black families. We do definitely invite allies to participate and join us. It’s really about having people centered on the mission. If you are supportive and understand that this is a space for black women to congregate and you want to join in in order to uplift and to learn more, definitely. Also another thing that I’ve very keen of, that there’s so many mothers that — everyone has their different family. There’s biracial families. There are folks that adopt black children. I don’t want to isolate people on the premise that this is only for black people, but you have to understand this is a space centered on blackness. If you want to be in it, there’s a mindset that you have to kind of adopt in order to de-center yourself. So many times when I walk into the room, I am the only black person, whether it’s in a corporate environment or — with the exception of my college experience, I definitely decided to go to a historically black college because I wanted to figure out who I was in the world when I wasn’t being compared to someone else, when I didn’t feel like I was being tokenized.

That experience in college really — I am confident there is no way I could’ve developed Well-Read Black Girl without that because I feel confident in every space. I don’t feel like I’m minimizing myself or trying to code switch, as people call it. I’m always just being myself. When it comes to people entering, if you understand and if you really want to learn and kind of just sit back — it’s not about always asking the question and always being front and center. It’s like, okay, let me see what this is and really appreciate it even when it makes me feel a little bit uncomfortable. That’s okay, but I’m here to learn. I think if you come in with that attitude, you are more than welcome. If someone comes in and they suddenly, “I think we should be reading this instead,” this isn’t the book club for you. If there’s a lot of objections or if there’s a lot of — sometimes we walk into a room and people really want to create tension or friction just because or just to be controversial.

Zibby: I feel like those people are everywhere. It doesn’t matter what you call your book club.

Glory: Oh, yeah. It’s true. There’s people that don’t really want to engage and learn. They just want to be argumentative.

Zibby: It’s like all of Twitter.

Glory: It’s Twitter. It literally is Twitter. I cannot have Twitter inside the book club. Twitter is a valuable tool. Social media has lent exposure and visibility when it’s used in a way that’s really innovate and it gives people more platforms and space, but it could also be really toxic too. There’s been moments where I’ve been on Twitter where people have said something that I disagree with and I’m like, should we talk on the phone? Sometimes there’s not enough context or nuance on Twitter. Even on email, things can get really confusing very quickly. I just had a moment where someone was emailing me. I was like, oh, I think she thinks I’m upset, and I really am not upset about something. I was like, we should get on the phone or we should get in person. That was another reason why I was very adamant about always having the book club in person, not only doing things online. I love in-person contact. I love communicating in person with people. I love the festival because there’s an energy. There’s just a feeling you get when you’re in person and you’re connecting with someone one on one. You can’t emulate that on Twitter. You can’t do that on Facebook. You can’t do that on — what’s the other one? Instagram. It’s really important for you to be in contact with people and communicate with them.

Zibby: You’re preaching to the choir here. So much of what you’re saying I feel like I could say and just have it be slightly different. I feel like there’s nothing that replaces being in person and looking up and talking. How fun is this? I get hear your perspective. We both love books so much. When I asked if I could come, it was more like I love really hearing all people’s stories. I like books of all different — when I evaluate books, at least, sometimes I don’t know what race the person is who’s writing the book. If it’s a good story, that’s the story I want to read.

Glory: It’s so amazing because I love the conversations where — as a black writer, there’s so many things that are just focused on race that it can take away from craft. That is super problematic because the writing — every book that I select, I am looking at sentence structure. I’m looking at exposition. I’m looking at the quality of the book. What I’m saying is this is no less of quality simply because it’s a black writer.

Zibby: Why would it be? No.

Glory: Why would it be? But some people would question that.

Zibby: Oh, stop. No, they wouldn’t. Really?

Glory: I mean, it’s crazy, but that’s the thing. That’s why the publishing industry has really taken to the movement because I have this platform where I’m able to profile and really uplift these stories. In my mind, this isn’t new because I’ve been reading these books forever. Why aren’t these on the forefront of the minds of so many different readers? Why are we sectioning things off as, “This is a black genre”? No, these are great storytellers. They deserve the recognition.

Zibby: Do you feel like they’re being sectioned off like in bookstores and stuff?

Glory: At times. I think things are changing, but yeah, definitely. With Tayari, I’ve been reading her since the nineties. Oprah’s Book Club, that was picked two years ago. Now there’s such a big boom. She’s been writing for a very, very long time. She’s been an incredible writer from the beginning. I’m so glad that Oprah selected her and gave her her proper accolades. Now she’s in the “mainstream.” I’ve been reading her forever. Silver Sparrow, it’s being republished and rereleased. That book can stand right next to An American Marriage. There is no separation, but now she’s being discovered years later. Of course, things take time.

Zibby: I feel like the same thing. I have writers that I’ve been following for twenty years. I’m like, oh, my gosh, how amazing now, but I was in college or something. This is what got me through a weekend in college that I remember like it was yesterday. Now look at this author.

Glory: Sometimes, it’s about time. It is more challenging as a black writer to get that boost. I’ve seen the difference it makes when I post something on Instagram. I see when people say, “I’m preordering now.” I love that. I’m not getting a royalty check for every heart or thumbs up. I just want to know that I’m having my small impact on changing what the cannon looks like and making sure if there is any kind of ROI that’s happening in this, it means that people are buying their books and they have the ability to be on best-seller lists and they can continue to have a body of work where it’s not just one great debut novel. It is a body of work. There’s series of books. I can be a life-long follower of their work. Right now, I’m really excited about Brit Bennett’s next book. I believe it’s called The Vanishing or Vanishing. Her first book, The Mothers, we read it for the book club. It was her first debut. I loved it. We had so many great conversations. Now she’s writing her second book. The same thing with Nicole Dennis-Benn. We all read Here Comes the Sun together. Then her second book, Patsy, we read it together. Now it goes beyond, okay, this is your debut book. This is, how can we be fans of yours forever? I love that. I love reading.

Zibby: I think some of the power of reading — I know a lot of the people who contributed essays to this anthology feel the same way. I think there’s two things that are really powerful. One is the ability to see yourself and to identify something that maybe you haven’t articulated. You see it in a book and you’re like, oh, I feel so understood. There’s that humanizing, amazing element of being seen or being understood or helping you sort out your own things. Then I also think it’s really important to get other people’s points of view. Maybe I wasn’t in this country at this time, but that’s such an interesting story, getting other people’s point of views. I feel like things right now, there’s so much divisiveness in the culture. I think now more than ever, not to be on any sort of platform, but it is so important to understand other people’s point of views and remember that ultimately, we all are moms or women or men or going through the same things every day. We may look different and we have different cultures, but some of those fundamental human thoughts and feelings, it’s all the same.

Glory: It really is. I agree with you.

Zibby: Why keep all these borders? I don’t know.

Glory: It’s really complicated because I think there are less spaces where we can come together and have honest dialogue about things. Books allow us to go through the perspective of another person and really take in their insight and just be with ourselves. Would I do that? How do I feel about that? and make a decision without feeling threatened or judged by another person. I think a lot of times people are afraid of judgement. They’re afraid of being wrong. That has actually been one thing that’s helped me excel. I’ve gone into spaces where I’m just like, I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m really okay with admitting that. I’m okay with being wrong. I’m okay with asking questions. I’m okay with “looking stupid” because how else will I learn? When people ask me questions about how you did this, I’m just like, I don’t know, I just really experimented. I also give credit to being in a space where — I did work in startup spaces. That’s all about iterating and pivoting. I watched a lot of men excel and clearly not know what they’re doing. That is what everyone is doing every day. We’re just trying our best. If you can work through the failures of whatever you’re doing, it will eventually lead to a success.

Also, being patient with yourself is so vital because had I given up after a year where I consistently had, again, under a hundred followers for the first year — I remember being at Christmas one year. I was with my little brother. I was really geeking out because something — I don’t know who retweeted me. Something happened, and I’m suddenly getting all these followers. The whole day on Christmas, I was like, oh, my gosh! I was so excited. My brothers are like, what are you doing? What is this world? My mom still doesn’t know — she’s super supportive. My mom was a registered nurse. She just was like, “This is your job.” She really has no full understanding, but she just is supportive and loving. I think every time she comes to the festival she gets it a little bit more. This year she became a little bit of an event producer. She was in the back. She was hanging out with talent. She stayed with Staceyann Chin like the whole time. It was hilarious. She sees it. She’s like, “Okay, this is your work. You’re growing community.” She sees it. She starts to understand. You need time. Things need time to develop organically. You have to be patient with yourself. It’s not about it just happening instantly.

Zibby: I also think, just because again you’ve stolen things that were in my mind about my own — because in the beginning, I had like twenty people downloading this podcast. I’m like, I don’t know. Well, I’m just going to try something new. I’m just going to keep going. I think part of it, though, is passion. You and I both, we feel so passionately about what we’re doing and helping spread the word about books that we care about and stories that we care about and whatever. Sometimes that’s enough. Why would I stop? Even if nobody listened tomorrow, I’m still having a blast.

Glory: I know. That’s so funny because that’s how I feel too. I do honestly feel that way. There was all this hoopla about, “Oh, my god, you’re going to be the next Oprah,” and this and that. I kept being like, no, no, no, Oprah is Oprah. I love and am completely obsessed with her. I respect her. I feel like she has set the precedent for so many things. I just really wanted to make new friends and read books. That was it. Now it’s grown into something else. What has changed is I do feel that immense responsibility. I do feel like when things happen that are really irresponsible, I do feel like I have a platform and a space to speak out and help others. I’m gaining more power. I’m feeling more confident in myself to challenge things. It’s not simply about just, okay, I’m making friends. I’m reading books. I’m really trying to make an impact that is lasting. I see so much of the work that I’m doing as part of my own individual legacy. Writing the book was so crucial for me because that shifted so many things. It was like, okay, this is not only on a digital space. This is in a book. I have a book. You can find this book ten years from now, a hundred years from now. Someone’s going to pick it up and read it and be moved by it and feel the way I felt when I was nineteen and I read Toni Morrison. It was really crucial for me to create something offline that was a beautiful piece of art.

Zibby: Let me read just a couple quotes because I know we’re almost out of time here. I could talk to you all day. You are such a role model for me, by the way, if I could grow my little platform into what you’ve created. You’re a total role model, just FYI.

Glory: Oh, my gosh, yay! Aw, you’re so sweet.

Zibby: Anyway, I’m just going to read, quickly, a couple quotes. In your introduction you wrote, “Reading highlights the intersection of narrative and self-image to create compelling explorations of identity. Reading allows us to witness ourselves. Being a reader is an incredible gift, providing me with a lens to interpret the world. Most important, it has invigorated my imagination and allowed me to choose which narratives I want to center and hold close.” That was amazing. I was like, star, when I’m writing. This was a quote from Dhonielle Clayton, is talking about reading Coffee Will Make You Black by April Sinclair. She said, “Not much happens in the book. But when I read it, everything happened for me. It was the right book at the right time, which as a former librarian I can tell you is the most important thing in the entire world,” which I completely — I’m sure you agree. The right book at the right time is life changing. One more quote. Carla Bruce-Eddings talks about being shy. She says she preferred to “observe, to twirl around in the fascinating constellation of my own mind where I could entertain myself by creating stories about the people around me,” which is a beautiful way to take being shy. Then one last quote from Jacqueline Woodson. She said, “I knew as soon as I started that writing was the thing that brought me the greatest joy.” Just to close, do you think writing is bringing the greatest joy, or is it this connection that writing can bring to the world?

Glory: I love it. It’s all of it. It’s the writing. It’s the reading. It’s being in close proximity to the readers themselves and building community. Writing for me right now, it’s the greatest joy but also the greatest challenge. I’m reading all these incredible books all of the time. I want my writing to be as worthy and as excellent as Jacqueline Woodson, as Sarah Broom, as Veronica Chambers, people that I admire. I want my work to be long lasting. I’ve just been taking a lot of time to study and to revise and edit and change things. Writing is difficult. Writing a book is really hard. It’s one thing to edit this and curate, which I feel like I’m learning. I’ve mastered that to a certain degree. But writing a book alone is a whole other experience. It’s been taking me to another part of my mind and just expanding what I can do as a creative artist. I’m up to the challenge, but I know it’s going to take me a long time. That’s okay. I’m going to be a new mom soon. I’m excited to be — I can share this with my son. Again, it’s another part of my legacy. It will be there when I’m gone. Hopefully, Well-Read Black Girl will still be there when I’m gone. I’m really working hard to create a cultural institution that serves as almost like a digital archive of all these amazing, new, contemporary writers that are coming out. It’s about the past, but it’s also looking towards the future and how we can continue to have intergenerational conversations. It’s all those things.

Zibby: Parting advice to aspiring authors?

Glory: Oh, my goodness, parting advice to aspiring authors. I would say to innovate and take risk with your writing. Really play with form and structure. Don’t be afraid to just be yourself on the page, whatever that looks like. The books that I’m drawn to always play with dialogue and are really forward-thinking with how they want to approach their work. Just be yourself. Stand out as much as possible. Some of the writers that we love and really support today, like Audre Lorde, they weren’t necessarily so popular during their time period, so think about that. Think less about popularity and more about craft and quality. You want the quality of your work to be outstanding.

Zibby: I love that. Thank you so much. Thank you, Glory, for all of this, oh, my gosh.

Glory: No, thank you. This was a lot of fun.

Zibby: Thank you. Bye.

Special Re-Release: Glory Edim, WELL-READ BLACK GIRL