Moore Humanities class students working on fiction writing got advice from a professional when Philadelphia sci-fi and comic book writer Alex Smith visited.
Smith offered tips and techniques for writing authentic characters and build worlds that promote diversity and agency in stories about the future. During two workshops, he asked to students to be more mindful of racial and gender bias in sci-fi and speculative fiction writing. Smith was a guest of faculty member Li Sumpter Ph.D. for her class Topics in Literature: Worldbuilding Through the Lens of Afrofuturism.
Smith encouraged the students to look at ways to diversify characters and reimagine them, using examples from movies like American Beauty and Black Panther.
Following the workshops, students presented their stories and excerpts March 1 during the event Sci-Fi as Survival: Creative Resistance Through Speculative Fiction Readings, which also included performances by the sci-fi artist/activist collective Metropolarity.