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Random > Writing/Description Question: Please Help!

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message 1: by [deleted user] (last edited May 15, 2018 09:01AM) (new)

Hi, everyone! I was working on writing when I realized something...

There's a side character (named Mercy) in my book whose parents are an interracial couple. Her father is either Polynesian or Malaysian (I'm still deciding that), and her mother is Greek.
I was describing this character, and I wrote the following sentence:
"Mercy follows me into the living room, her angled brown eyes trained on me."
But then I thought that describing her eyes like that could be racist? I really don't want to be offensive; but I'm no expert on what's acceptable...
And thanks in advance. :)


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

fixed typo in thread title--sorry about that!


message 3: by JENNY (new)

JENNY (just-jenn) | 6 comments Many people will see nothing from this. However, many will find it racist. It is difficult to understand what others consider acceptable and I have found it hard to please everyone. I personally don't see anything wrong with it but I am from Cuban descent. This would be best answered from the race you choose.

Good luck!


Frank-Intergalactic Bookdragon (intergalacticbookdragon) Try doing a little research on how to describe someone in a non offensive way, i personally don't think it's racist and it's just describe a fact about how someone looks (where as if she was treated badly because of how she looked and the book said that's ok that would be racist) but some people might find it racist so i would check to make sure. I'm writing a book to and have a Brazilian character so i looked up how they describe themselves.


message 5: by Errin (new)

Errin Stevens (errintevens) | 22 comments I think you are being respectful, which is the most important part of your effort imo and should negate any unintended slight. Maybe the way for you to feel comfortable is to attach the attribute to some positive emotional component of the scene, such as the slant of her eyes giving her expression a wisdom beyond her years or some such thing. Mostly, I would caution you not to try and please everyone, because no matter how careful you are, someone somewhere will choose to be offended by this or some other component of your narrative.


message 6: by [deleted user] (new)

If your worried about it, add a comment beneath stating what you were trying to do


message 7: by Addison (last edited May 15, 2018 01:31PM) (new)

Addison Dixon I don't see anything racist about it. You would be racist if you were making fun or saying something derogatory. You're describing.


message 8: by Audrey (new)

Audrey (niceyackerman) | 324 comments I’ve seen “almond-shaped eyes” a lot, so that’s safe if you’re worried about it.


message 9: by Brianna (new)

Brianna (nifflerlover) | 577 comments I think your description is fine. You are giving a description of what she looks like. I have put similar descriptions in my books before, so I think you are safe


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