ADDENDUM to the last chapter on adding diversity:
Adding racial diversity only applies to settings and time periods where racial diversity exists. Go to 1800s England, you likely won't find any Chinese or Indians walking around. Go to present day South Korea, 99% of the people there will be South Korean. The setting and time period definitely matter, and trying to add racial diversity to those settings would be inaccurate.
If your story is set in a place/time where racial diversity doesn't really exist, then consider adding LGBTQ and/or disabled characters. (Sidenote: Disabilities can be so variable--physcial, mental, emotional, you name it. And remember, not all disabilities are visible!! I know someone who has depression and panic disorder, and she's considered disabled and has a service dog. You don't have to be blind or have lost a leg to be disabled. Some people are disabled because of a breathing problem and they'd be unable to walk far distances, but they otherwise look normal and healthy.)
I apologize that this was a point of confusion! Take home message: Don't add diversity where it doesn't exist. Don't ignore diversity where it should and does exist.
But you have absolutely no excuse to ignore POCs in a high fantasy story where you're making up all the races and cultures yourself. ;)
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