With over 1,200 signatories, Stephen King, Margaret Atwood and Roxane Gay are a few names showing their support to trans and non-binary communities of the US and Canada.
Following a string of controversial remarks being made by a prominent UK author, the conversation over trans rights in the literary world has become centre of attention.
This isn’t the first time for authors and creatives to publicly denounce discriminatory comments. Last week, author Malorie Blackman, broadcaster Clara Amfo and writer Jeanette Winterson joined more than 200 members of the publishing industry in the UK and Ireland to sign a letter in solidarity with the trans and non-binary community.
In the latest letter to be published, the co-signers include the likes of Roxane Gay, Ian McEwan, Susan Hill, Neil Gaiman, John Green, NK Jemisin and Angie Thomas.
“This is a message of love and solidarity for the trans and non-binary community,” the letter reads. “Culture is, and should always be, at the forefront of societal change, and as writers, editors, agents, journalists, and publishing professionals, we recognise the vital role our industry has in advancing and supporting the wellbeing and rights of trans and non-binary people.
“We stand with you, we hear you, we see you, we accept you, we love you. The world is better for having you in it. Non-binary lives are valid, trans women are women, trans men are men, trans rights are human rights. From members of the UK and Irish publishing community.”
This week, a letter was circulated around North American publishing circles to support trans and non-binary folx. It is a companion to one released in the UK last week. You can read it here: https://t.co/JnzSGQKeGl
— Maureen Johnson (@maureenjohnson) October 7, 2020
Johnson continued her Twitter thread to recognise and support the identities of trans and non-binary people. “Trans women are women. Trans men are men. Non-binary persons are non-binary. Your pronouns matter. You matter,” she tweeted.
The author also highlighted the purpose of the letter, saying: “Almost 1000 authors, publishers, editors, agents, and other publishing professionals have signed. Letters do not fix things. They are designed to a) show support and b) bring awareness to an issue. In this case, the issue is transphobia in the publishing discourse and community.”
While a letter will not resolve all issues, we hope it draws attention to the ongoing prejudices trans and non-binary people face on a daily basis.