Then, this afternoon, I saw this. It asked what happened to the type of black literature that was popular in the 90s and early 2000s.
Let's go over the authors that are listed in the beginning in this article. Yes, Bebe and E. Lynn are no longer with us. But E. Lynn's estate has released three books since his passing. Asha Bandele came out with a book two years ago. And Bernice McFadden came out with a book this year (which I reviewed here) and an ebook.
My point is this: that type Black literature is still around. You just have to find it.
Here are a few tips.
Google/Yahoo Search/Bing is your friend: I don't care what kind of search engine you use. Just look up African-American books or African-American literature and you can find something.
Amazon, Barnes and Noble and other booksellers are your friends: Look up an author on one of these sites and they usually suggest books that others have bought. There are also smaller booksellers online that just sell African-American books, like Hue-Man (soon) and Mahogany Books. Employees at the bookstores will also tell you what's hot.
Social media is your friend: Ask your Facebook and Twitter friends what they are reading. They may give you some good suggestions. Many authors are also on Facebook and Twitter and some even give suggestions. There's also social media for book lovers, like GoodReads, Shelfari and LibraryThing. And you see that long list on the right hand side of your screen? Many of those are blogs about African-American books. I'm not the only one.
Librarians are your friends: (puts on librarian hat) The library is a great place to discover new books. The librarians and other staff will know what's the hottest book right now and will give you recommendations. Some libraries also have databases to help you find your next read. (takes off hat)
Friends are, well, your friends: I know not everyone is like me and got friends who like to read. But I know you got to have a friend or two who likes to read and can recommend a book.
It's 2012. There are several ways to find books now. Use them. Find something that floats your boat. If you like the book, tell friends and encourage them to read. This way, black literature won't die.