You've got an amazing illustrated book list of which you can be proud, and some exciting forthcoming titles. You've made sure that the characters in your books are ethnically diverse, and maybe one or two books include a wheelchair user.
However, you feel in your gut that there's more you could be doing to make your books inclusive. But where do you start? Who do you need to include? What can you represent? And how can you make sure you get it right?
I know what it's like to be in this situation and feel stuck. I was there 15 years ago when I worked in-house. But working with others to push the team and make us accountable changed everything.
The first thing to understand is that making books inclusive isn't about publishing different books, or adding 'inclusive books' to your list, but about looking at the great stories that you are already working on and taking them to another level.
It's not easy to achieve alone, which is where the Inclusion Accelerator comes in.
Go from stuck to soaring!
I'll gently push you (and your team) out of your comfort zone and encourage you to think bigger, help change your mindset about what books can and can't be inclusive (spoiler – any book can be inclusive), I'll be there to be accountable to, but also to hold your hand. I'll make sure the little voice in your head goes from 'Can we do this?' to 'Let's do this!'
I'll work with you to make FIVE of your forthcoming titles highly inclusive. Saving you time and worry by taking the research, briefing, implementation and checking out of your hands, while still keeping you involved so that you learn from the process.
Before doing that, it's important to look at where you are coming from, so I'll give you an overview of your current list, looking at where your strengths are in terms of inclusion and where you could be doing more.
How does it work?
The Inclusion Accelerator has three phases, detailed below.
I'll look at your current books identifying strengths and areas where you could be doing more, as well as any pitfalls.
Based on the findings I'll develop simple guidelines for inclusion to ensure the whole team are on board and at the same level.
The guidelines can be delivered in a document, but also via a webinar.
You'll send me 10 books that you have or are planning to acquire. I'll make bold suggestions for how each could be made more inclusive.
You'll review my suggestions and choose 5 to go ahead with.
We can have a virtual meeting to discuss the suggestions if required.
I'll do all the research needed around the aspects that are being included, including connecting with people with lived experience.
I'll create briefs for each illustrator, including image references, to help them implement the suggestions. I'll review artwork at rough and colour stages.
Ad-hoc email support to answer any questions. We can also have up to 4 virtual meetings.
Different publishers work on different schedules, so exact timelines will need to be discussed on a case by case basis with key dates agreed in advance.
The Inclusion Accelerator is an investment not just for the books you take forward, but for the understanding and awareness of the whole team moving forwards.
Want to talk about how it could work for you? Get in touch to arrange a call.