And, while you’re at it, you can go read her post on Writing the Other over at the World SF blog.
Writing The Other is a sensitive topic. It should be. Not least because it’s so often been done so very, very, badly.
But the truth is that unless you’re writing autobiography, any character you write is going to be The Other.
I am not a serial killer. (Unless my multiple personalities are hiding something from me.) I am also not a 50s housewife, a parking attendant, a car-jacking reality TV star, a Ugandan email scammer, a Tokyo mecha pilot, or a future-world stubborn-as-heck gay anti-corporate activist. And even though my novelist friends Thando Mgqolozana and Zukiswa Wanner like to joke that I’m a black girl trapped in a white girl’s skin, I’m not Zoo City’s hip, fast-talking, ex-journo, ex-junkie black Joburg girl protagonist, Zinzi.
(you can also see Lauren on the Hugo Awards shortlist, where she’s up for a Campbell Award)