Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Ban My Book? Why, Yes Please

That’s right boys and girls and all you people in between and on the edges. It’s Banned Books week, one of my favorite literary weeks of all time. It’s a week when us creative, free-thinking types can peruse lists of banned books (like this one here) and go, really? Stuff that this still happens?

Yep, it surely does. And I’m here to say I dream about it happening to me, too. Why you ask? It’s simple, as a reader —well, as a person really— nothing makes me want to do something more than when somebody tells me I can’t. I’m rebellious by nature. It’s a flaw, I know, but I can’t help, at least not when it comes to intellectual freedom (Side note 1: I have no trouble whatsoever in obeying the laws as they exist today, i.e. no stealing, murdering, or any other such issues here). And I have a pretty good idea that a lot of readers, especially those interested in YA, feel the same way. So yeah, I would love to have a banned book, please oh please (side note 2: while having a banned book would make me feel rock star cool, I despite the attitude behind the idea of book banning and the people/organizations responsible for it).

With this in mind, I’ve thrown together a simple checklist of subjects/content which may help any writer eventually end up with a banned book. (Side note 3: A lot of these subjects are in The Nightmare Affair, too — yah!)

Here it goes, in no particular order:

Any sexuality
Anything Anti-establishment (i.e. government, church, military, school system, media, etc)
Drug use
Diversity of Belief Systems
Ethnic Diversity
Offensive Language

Well, that’s all I can think of at the moment, but I’m sure there’re lots more. What do you think? Have you read any good banned books lately? Oh, and aren’t you happy we live in a society where this post and discussion is even possible? I know am. Let’s keep it that way!

Happy Writing


  1. I like this comment on the same page as the banned book list:

    "(ALA's basic policy concerning access to information) states that, “Librarians and governing bodies should maintain that parents—and only parents—have the right and the responsibility to restrict the access of their children—and only their children—to library resources.” Censorship by librarians of constitutionally protected speech, whether for protection or for any other reason, violates the First Amendment."

    I especially like that it is the parent's right as well as their responsibility to restrict access for their children.

    There are definitely some books out there that I do not want my kids reading, heck I think there are plenty out there that no one should really read but that is both the privilege and price of freedom.

  2. I totally agree with you, Man. I practice plenty of self-censorship but choosing not to read something isn't the same thing as being told you can't.

  3. Well, when I get published, my series will definitely be banned. But proud of it! It's ridiculous. There should be freedom of speech..I thought that applied? Guess I was wrong.

    Love the blog.


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