In case I haven’t made it clear, I’m an eternally insecure guy, and even more so when it comes to my writing. Walter is one of my favorite characters. He’s one of the few unambiguously likable characters that Max meets on base. And yet, I’m a little nervous about how he will be perceived, particularly by black readers.

I hope that Walter’s willingness to put up with having to hide his race is not seen as weakness. As this page shows, he has his reasons. And I think that his decision to suffer this indignity for the greater good (even if it is also somewhat self-serving) is a show of strength. But then, I’ve never experienced discrimination, and certainly not on the scale that African Americans lived with in the 1940s. So who am I to say?

In any case, I hope that you end up liking Walter as much as I do.