I’m about to start off on a new story, and have decided to include a transgender character with basically a gay orientation. I know a fair amount about the transgender community from covering the struggle for LGBT rights for six years.
But knowing is not the same as living.
I’ve decided to try to find an expert to help me get the details right. I’m not straight, but I write straight characters. I’m not a woman, but I’ve written female characters. I’m not a werewolf… well, you get the idea.
But I think writing transgender characters is a bit of a special case, if only because there is so much misinformation around about what it means to be transgender, and still so much oppression.
The transgender community is where the gay community was twenty or thirty years ago – when well-meaning folks would use phrases like “sexual preference” and when it was not uncommon to be asked by friends “so who’s the woman?”
So I think we have a responsibility, when writing transgender characters, to get the details right.
What about you guys? Have you ever written a transgender character? How was it? Do we have any transgender folks here who’d like to share a little wisdom?