Language is important to our everyday lives. Websites like Addictionary® and the Conscious Style Guide provide the tools for editors to be more conscious of their language when writing about substance abuse disorders, but editors must make the first move to ensure that this language becomes more common across literature platforms.
If it’s safe to say that we’re all aware of the need for greater, more accurate representation of marginalized voices in publishing, then how do controversies like the one around AMERICAN DIRT continue to happen?
Misophonia is a condition that affects only about 15 percent of the population, yet understanding the condition and avoiding its triggers has benefits that extend far beyond that narrow demographic.
Research is an important aspect of writing, often prompting authors to reach out to experts in the topics they are writing about. But things start to get complicated when we talk about fiction.
Editors must consider and balance the feelings of two groups of people when suggesting language changes: firstly, they must consider how the reader will react to the language of the original manuscript; and secondly, they must consider how the author will respond to the suggested edits.
Our May 2020 title faces down its darker elements—including violence, bigotry, and abuse—with both unflinching realism and hope. Importantly, it portrays the struggles of two main characters who fall under the LGBTQIA+ umbrella. Because these identities do not exist as a monolith, and also because this is a book intended for a YA audience, Ooligan chose to incorporate authenticity readers (sometimes called sensitivity readers) into the editorial process.