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  • Writer's pictureSteven Nickodemski

What challenges do LGTBQ+ writers and authors face today? Some of us have no idea.

As a society, we have made significant strides towards inclusivity and acceptance of the LGBTQ+ community, but we still have a long way to go. One area that often goes unnoticed is the representation of LGBTQ+ writers in the literary world. Being an LGBTQ+ writer in today's society means facing unique challenges and obstacles that non-LGBTQ+ writers don't have to deal with.

According to a survey conducted by the New York Times, in 2020, only 22% of books on the New York Times Bestseller list were written by authors who identify as LGBTQ+. This is a staggering statistic considering the LGBTQ+ community makes up approximately 4.5% of the U.S. population. This lack of representation can be harmful because it reinforces the idea that being LGBTQ+ is not normal or acceptable, which can lead to further discrimination and prejudice.

Beyond the statistics, LGBTQ+ writers face a variety of challenges when it comes to getting their work published and recognized. For example, they may struggle to find agents or publishers who are willing to take on their work, or they may be asked to "straighten" their characters or storylines to make them more palatable to a mainstream audience. This erasure of LGBTQ+ voices and experiences not only does a disservice to the writers themselves but also to the wider LGBTQ+ community.

Furthermore, LGBTQ+ writers who do manage to get their work published may face backlash from those who feel that LGBTQ+ stories should not be told or who feel threatened by their existence. This can lead to hate mail, online harassment, and even physical threats, which can be incredibly isolating and traumatic.

Despite these challenges, however, LGBTQ+ writers continue to write and share their stories, defying the odds and pushing for greater representation and acceptance. They are a vital part of the literary world and their voices deserve to be heard.

In conclusion, being an LGBTQ+ writer in today's society means facing unique challenges and obstacles, from a lack of representation in the literary world to outright discrimination and hatred. However, it also means being a part of a community of resilient and talented individuals who refuse to be silenced or erased. By amplifying their voices and stories, we can work towards a future where all voices are heard and all stories are celebrated.

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