Advice from the LGBT community


#1

Hello,
So I have this story thought up and ready to be made but I want some real advice of if my characters will work and if it’s not sterotypical or demeaning. As a straight POC woman writing about a gay character and no gay friends to personally ask I want to make sure my story is respectable and sounds enjoyable.

The MC is named Hideki, a Japanese-American who like makeup as a hobby but dreams of being a homicide detective after High School. another hobby of his is cross-dressing as his female ‘alter ego’. this secret got out in his old school along with a boyfriend he was with in secret forcing him to move away for a fresh start.

He meets an African-American boy named Rodney and is instantly attracted, Rodney doesn’t know Hideki is gay until much later and finds himself confused about his own identity, he isn’t attracted to boys to be gay or bisexual, only Hideki he loves though. The two struggle trying to figure out how their relationship works. All the while someone from Hideki’s past is stalking him for revenge.

Meanwhile, his sister Miyuki is dealing with a office affair that had gone awry and a baby on the way. on top of that, Samir is falling for her and wants to be there for her but Miyuki doesn’t know if she can open herself up to another man again.

I plan on two other stories in this “series”
so basically I want to know

  1. is a gay character and straight character love dynamic cliche/stereotypical/or just a bad idea?
  2. how to write Hideki as a feminine gay without being a flaming camp.
  3. any ideas I could add?

also, I’m writing this out in book style first since trying to figure out the scripting program at the same time would take me forever, honestly I’m in a position where I’m wondering if I should try publishing it as an actual book so here’s another big question…
Would anyone want to cowrite with me? I would need someone ABSOLUTELY serious about writing this WITH me, bounce ideas with me and we can decide together if we want to publish here on Episode or as an actual book.


LGTBQ+ in my story
#2

This sounds like a huge project, and one you’d have to be really careful with. I think you’d need to keep in really close contact with people from the LGBTQ+ community throughout writing.

One thing I have to say straight off the bat is: if Rodney is romantically/sexually attracted to someone of the same gender, he is not straight. It’s fine if you don’t want to attach labels like gay or bisexual to him, but then you also can’t attach the label straight to him. He’s attracted to Hideki and it confuses him :woman_shrugging:t4: that’s enough.

Also, this is probably more of a personal thing, but I hate when the antagonist’s only hold over the MC is they know that they’re gay and manages to destroy the MC’s life with it. Obviously I know that, unfortunately, a bit of homophobia is realistic but to me, it feels like unrealistic that the MC only faces it because of one huge villain in their life and everything is perfect otherwise. I have no idea if that is the plot you were going to write, I just wanted to point that out.

I hope this was at least a little helpful?

Xx


#3

That’s what’s worrying me. I believe this story could be amazing if I’m careful in the delivery.

Hideki goes through hiding his self again in the new school, facing bias and micro aggressions of being Asian. Supporting his sister, and dealing with a father who ignores his sexuality rather than accept it and breaking through the toxic mentality he had of himself because of his ex boyfriend.

Rodney’s senses of his own identity is also difficult since HE doesn’t know what to call himself. This would be his first gay relationship having never really been attracted to men before and his own struggles to understanding it and embracing it.

The antagonist is Hideki’s ex boyfriend from his old school named Jared, who is very abusive. he’s mentally unstable and truly believes he owns Hideki. He used Hideki’s sexuality as a main reasoning to make him stay but overall beat and verbally abused him for anything. Jared followed Hideki to his new place to get him back.
Did that explain more of what I have in mind?


#4

Hmm, yes that does explain more.

I think your Hideki/Rodney storyline is probably fine, but as I said, keep a few members of the LGBTQ+ community by your side as you write it.

As for the ex-boyfriend thing, you’re definitely going to have to include a trigger warning if you’re tackling themes such as abuse. You also need to make it really clear that Jared is extreme in that way as a person, not because of his sexuality or even really because of Hideki.

Uhh, yeah, I think that’s all I personally have to say on the idea. Oh, and please please please don’t make it all sad and traumatic. Hideki definitely deserves some happiness.

Xx


#5
  1. You will probably have to have an arc in there of Rodney coming to terms with the fact that he’s not, in fact, straight like he originally seems to have thought he was.
    Of course, it’s normal and actually good for a novel to have characters with different beliefs to the author and other characters. So the fact that he may insist that he’s straight and struggle with his burgeoning sexuality is not a problem, as long as he learns along the way. My relationship with my first serious girlfriend was like that, because she was from a strict orthodox Christian family and had never considered herself anything but straight before.

  2. The best way to avoid making him into a stereotypical farce while still letting him enjoy drag and makeup is to make him a fully rounded character with multiple interests and hobbies. The fact that you’ve already decided his dream is to become a homicide detective is great! Flesh him out just like that a little more.
    Also a heterosexual author, it’s probably best not to make him talk like your average contestant on RuPaul’s Drag Race. Anyone who isn’t a queer male themselves (or doesn’t have a few to consult with) should probably steer clear of that, because it is so easy to eff it up and make it offensive.

Your story sounds interesting, and it’s obvious that you want to be careful and courteous of the LGBTQ+ community while you write it, so you’re already off to a good start. Anything you write that makes you worry, “Could this be offensive?” definitely get a few people to read over for you (a few being the operative term here, since LGBTQ+ people aren’t a hivemind and what one person is totally okay with, another may be extremely offended by).


#6

Would I be able to keep posting help here? do you or do you know anyone, or a group willing to look over my work as I write it? Do you or do you know anyone who would be willing to cowrite with me?
I ask because I know I should have a few people in this community to consult but I don’t know any personally, the Episode forum however is extremely diverse and I think it could be beneficial to me in deciding making this a true novel series or an Episode series as I write it.


#7

I can’t see why you wouldn’t be able to continue to post here asking for help! I think a lot of us would be very eager to help and offer advice.
I would be willing to look at whatever you wrote. I couldn’t help co-write since I have a bunch of projects of my own, but I would be willing to help you with directing if you do decide to turn it into an Episode story.


#8

I guess I have another question I’d like to make sure is okay about Hideki’s cross dressing to make sure is not offensive or unbelievable.

The reason he cross dresses is to be a different person. to have a completely different personality, backstory and generally not be Hideki anymore. When he becomes Ayumi she prefers female pronouns and refers to Hideki as her friend. Hideki isn’t delusional he knows he’s a boy and doesn’t want to legally change genders but after the abuse he suffered, becoming Ayumi became more than a fun hobby at times, it was how he coped. Does this sound okay?


#9

#10

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