I knew that I wanted Bella to be Black and but I struggled with the Cullens; did I want them to stay all white and have the BellaxEdward relationship be a jumping off point for a lot of discussion/issues that might naturally come up especially if the person of color in a white/POC relationship is socially conscious and not white-identifying? Or did a want a more respresentational approach with the Cullens being a very multicultural family of “adopted” kids of all different nationalities? However, I thought that might be difficult for how old all of the Cullens are and how much attention that would draw.
So all the Cullens are Black and except for Carlisle, African American. My goal is to keep with the progression of the novels and canon character backgrounds as much as possible, with the only differences being where I think the canon would conflict with the characters’ backgrounds. I think this will make for a pretty awesome compare/contrast. So Carlisle is Ethiopian and the son of a Ethiopian OrthodoxTewahedo priest known for his exorcisms and vampire hunting. Obviously he has to leave when he becomes a vampire and basically follows canonCarlise’s story from there until getting to America (wow that part’s going to be… interesting).
One thing that I really want to focus on is the way being Black would affect being a vampire, especially ones such as the Cullens, who basically try to reintegrate into human life without drawing too much attention to themselves.
Things like Carlisle being a doctor, all of them going to university over and over again, amassing the huge amounts of wealth the canonCullens have… all that would be possible but much more difficult, and when you add the fact that the Cullens migrate often and had to have changed identities quite a few times, at a time when Black people were confined to a smaller community and the rich Black community was an even smaller than now, the same family popping up unaged a few times over a few decades would be sure to draw some kind of attention I assume, so I’m still thinking of how to navigate that…
It’s been really fun researching the Black history of the last century and reworking Twilight to fit characters to fit that history and make the story as realistic as possible.
I will soon be posting my fancastings for each character and more on my headcanon backstories, I haven’t started writing yet but I should begin in the next month or so (RL likes to interfere).