Sensitivity/Beta Reading Co-Op

Earlier tonight I fell down a rabbit hole of the (entirely justified) backlash that JK Rowling faced when she wrote an incredibly insensitive, flattening, dismissive account of Native and First Nations peoples in the “magical history of North America,” and the majority of what I read was from Indigenous voices (including a thread from Dia!), and it was really good, but it got me thinking about my own writing.

On a handful of occasions that I was writing POV fiction from minority identies to which I don’t belong, I employed beta readers and sensitivity readers from those identities, and tried to further compensate them, especially if the work was long. But–I was able to do that pretty easily because I was then a student at a relatively metropolitan university, with a lot of friends or at least acquaintances who were willing to do that.

Since I don’t have that luxury any more, and since I don’t have the money to pay professional sensitivity readers (or a publisher to pay them for me), I thought maybe I might find people here who needed or wanted a similar thing for their work.

So: I guess, if you’re interested in helping other people with their writing (especially with matters of sensitivity/representation), you can post here; you can identify yourself as much or as little as you feel comfortable. I checked through this subforum but the main creative writing thread seems like it’s less about workshopping and more about sharing–which is of course great.

I’ll start. I’m a recent college grad. I’m mixed white-Chicano. I identify as bisexual, and as masculine-presenting genderqueer/nonbinary. I’ve also dealt with mental health issues for much of my life. These are the experiences which I feel most comfortable helping any writers that are writing about them talk through.

If this is inappropriate @Mods please let me know and I’ll amend/remove, but otherwise, yeah–I really like the community here and I think this could be a great place to support each other’s work!