I remember one day spending hours writing and rewriting a post trying to politely explain to some hopeful writer who sent me bits of the Native American romance she wrote that there were some serious issues in her research. I don’t mind offering assistance to new writers, but sometimes it can be a dangerous prospect. This woman got really mad at me when I pointed out to her that she should pick one tribe and look into it in great detail. You see she had badly mixed styles of clothing and housing in an area where the tribes didn’t even have access to those things. Now you’d think she’d be glad to have a chance to portray the particular tribe accurately.
Not the case. She said things like “what difference does the tribe make” and “any intelligent reader will get the general idea.” I tried to be polite (I swear I did) when I explained that generalizing Indians as a whole was less that respectful. It seemed like a simple idea to me, but no matter how I worded my concerns, she just didn’t see “what the big deal was.” No wonder I see so many books out there with portrayals of Indian that make me cringe (or swear loudly). Sometime I wonder if I’m the only one who wishes more folks would write about modern Indians, rather than “historicals” that spit at the truth as they go by.
Below: They were just entertainment shows. Who cares if they weren't culturally or historically accurate? What harm did they do?