SALT LAKE CITY — The New York Times reported that the children’s book industry is having its own #MeToo movement.
Earlier this week, allegations against young adult authors for sexual misconduct, harassment and behavior circulated online. Popular writers like James Dashner (The Maze Runner series) and Jay Asher ("13 Reasons Why") were named in the allegations.
Allegations first appeared in an article from author Anne Ursu on the online publication Medium. It did not name any authors. However, comments and social media posts grew too large to contain and, soon enough, authors were named, according to The New York Times.
“Some of the complaints made public dealt with what women called ‘creepy’ comments, remarks about their bodies and persistent sexual advances in a work setting or at work-related events,” according to The New York Times.
Martha Brockenbrough, an author, said all of these incidents make it harder for women to succeed in the industry.
“Think about all of the books that haven’t been created by the women who have been driven away, or silenced or just reduced in spirit,” she said. “It takes a lot of courage, focus and discipline to write a book, so when you’re feeling uncomfortable, it’s harder to create.”
Read more at The New York Times.
As the Deseret News reported, Dashner’s agent dropped him after the allegations came out against him. Dashner later apologized for his remarks on Twitter.
“I believe all victims must be heard, and I’m committed to listening to them,” Dashner continued. “I’ve taken these past few days for introspection, to see if I’ve been part of the problem. I think that I have. I didn’t honor or fully understand boundaries and power dynamics. I can sincerely say that I have never intentionally hurt another person. But to those affected, I am so deeply sorry. I am taking any and all criticism and accusations very seriously, and I will seek counseling and guidance to address them. Thank you for listening.”