I really dislike this trend in sf/f where people are questioned about their goddamn credentials every time they write about mental illness (I’m bipolar and have been hospitalized for suicide attempts) or being queer (hi!) or being trans (hi!) or whatever the hell it is. Because sometimes it is not any of your goddamn business. For years I didn’t write trans characters because I was afraid I would get ripped apart by the wolves for doing it wrong, and the only way to “prove” I was doing it “right” was to–you guessed it–out myself. Now I’m out, all right, and still pissed about it.
Either the work handles the issue well or it doesn’t. But don’t assume you know things about the author’s personal background if they haven’t gone on record. Don’t fucking pressure people into exposing everything for your fucking knives.
Yoon Ha Lee on #ownvoices.