Girl behind #1000BlackGirlBooks gets dream job
nj.com - When Marley Dias started her #1000BlackGirlBooks social media campaign to collect books featuring black girls as main characters, she didn't expect to exceed her goal of a thousand books.
Dias, an Essex County middle-schooler, came up with the campaign last year after becoming frustrated with the lack of black, female main characters in books she had to read for school, the ones filled with "white boys and their dogs."
But the effort drew a surplus of books — more than 7,000 so far — and a significant amount of attention from national media. Marley wound up a guest on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" and later got to meet Oprah Winfrey and Michelle Obama.
Now the 11-year-old from West Orange has been made an editor-in-residence for Elle.com, which on Monday launched Marley Mag, a zine of her very own.
"When you see a character you can connect with, if they learn a specific lesson, you're more likely to apply that to your life," Dias told NJ Advance Media in January when talking about the impetus behind her book campaign. Dias, then a sixth grader at Thomas A. Edison Middle School, said her ultimate goal was to edit her own pop culture and lifestyle magazine.