Sensitivity Reading Services

Status: Currently open to requests for sensitivity reading services. Please read the entire page before submitting a request.

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According to Writing in the Margins, “a sensitivity reader reads through a manuscript for issues of representation and for instances of bias on the page.  The goal of a sensitivity reader isn’t to edit a manuscript clarity and logic, although that may be an additional service offered. A sensitivity reader reviews a manuscript for internalized bias and negatively charged language.  A sensitivity reader is there to help make sure you do not make a mistake, but they are also NOT a guarantee against making a mistake.”

Sensitivity reading is not the same as beta reading. A beta reader is a non-professional reader who offers critique on an unfinished manuscript, on aspects of the craft such as pacing, plot, character development, grammar, sentence structure, etc. I will not be providing any structural feedback of your work. 

I am a lifelong reader and have been blogging for the past year. I have come across and read several books with harmful representations of cultures, identities, and experiences, so I would like to offer my expertise gained from my life experiences to ensure that readers are not continually exposed to harmful and hurtful content. Books representing marginalized identities are often at risk, and though not all members of a community or culture might find an aspect of your book problematic, I will do my due diligence to ensure that there aren’t glaring misrepresentations in your work. 

Areas of Expertise:

  • South Asia, South Asian/diasporic characters, specifically India and Indian/diasporic characters.
  • Indian history, politics, culture, and social issues.
  • Hindu practices, traditions, festivals, mythology, etc. Generally Christianity, Islam, Sikhism and other religions as practiced in India.
  • Languages: Tamil (spoken and written), Hindi (spoken and written), Sanskrit (written). Including multilingualism and code-switching with English. 
  • Immigrant and expatriate experiences (any generation).
  • Mental illness, specifically depression and anxiety, neurodiversity/disability from a caregiver/professional POV. 
  • Chronic pain and chronic illness (specifically PCOS).
  • Fat characters and fat positivity. 
  • LGBTQIA+ representation, specifically gray/sapio/demi-ace, bi/pan/gray-aro, sexually fluid and genderfluid characters. Including characters that are still in the closet/not fully out/out to very specific audiences. 
  • Characters with complex relationships with parents and siblings.
  • Graduate school experiences in the US as an International student.

In addition to these specific areas, I can do a general sensitivity reading for harmful content like ableism, classism, sexism, misogyny, colorism, Islamophobia, anti-blackness (specifically in the South Asian community), etc. However, these will be solely from my perspective and not necessarily always from first-hand experiences. After receiving your request, we can discuss what specific elements I am comfortable providing feedback on and those for which I would suggest another sensitivity reader. 

Preferred genres:

  • Adult fiction: Literary fiction, historical fiction, urban fantasy, science fiction, magical realism, contemporary, humor, romance, and erotica.
  • YA/NA fiction: urban fantasy, science fiction, contemporary, romance, magical realism.
  • MG fiction: any genre

General Terms and Conditions: 

  • I do not guarantee the acceptance of every request. If I choose to reject your manuscript, I will provide you with the reason for my decision. A rejection is not a personal bias against you or your work. 
  • Once I accept your manuscript, we will discuss pricing and payment options and come to an agreement, upon which I will sign a non-disclosure agreement you provide that comply with the terms and conditions listed below. 
  • I will require at least 10 days to read your manuscript. I will read every word of your manuscript at least once, and provide a 1-3 page report with feedback on all the issues I noticed with quotations and explanations, as well as suggestions for how to fix it. 
  • If you require feedback on your manuscript within a specific time period, please provide that information along with your request. There may be an extra fee for a quicker turnaround, which will be discussed with you before I begin reading your manuscript. 
  • Following the completion of my sensitivity reading, you will be sent a feedback form to provide an honest evaluation of my services including constructive criticism, if any. There will also be an option to provide a testimonial of my work to be published on this blog.

Pricing: 

Writing In The Margins suggests that sensitivity readers be paid at least $250 for feedback on a full manuscript (60,000-100,000 words). The prices given below are starting rates and will be open to negotiation on a case-by-case basis. 

Pricing brackets are as follows: (All prices will be rounded to the nearest whole cent, in USD):

  • 5000 words or less: $50 flat rate
  • 5001 to 10,000: $50 +(# words) x ($0.005 per word)
  • 10,001 to 50,000 words: $150+(# words) x ($0.002 per word)
  • 50,0001 and over: $200 +(# words) x ($0.001 per word)

Payment Terms and Conditions:

  • Payment will be accepted via Paypal or an Amazon e-gift card
  • Full payment is expected prior to the rendering of services.
  • If you have financial difficulties and are unable to make the full payment at a time (due to being a student, unemployment, etc.), we can come up with a payment schedule (that will include specific deadlines) to better suit your needs. This is again negotiable and on a case-by-case basis. 
  • The sensitivity reading time-period will begin as soon as I receive the base rate (or other agreed upon amount).
  • Payment is nonrefundable.
  • If I am unable to complete reading your manuscript and providing you feedback, then I will refund you the money for the number of words that I have not finished reading based on the price bracket that your manuscript falls under. The base rate will not be refunded under any circumstances. 

Privacy Terms and Conditions:

  • Formal non-disclosure agreements prior to the rendering of services that comply with my terms and conditions are preferred. 
  • If I agree to be a sensitivity reader for your manuscript, I will not disclose any information regarding your manuscript to anyone other than pre-approved parties prior to publication. I reserve the right as a reader and reviewer to critique the text of the finished copy.
  • If your manuscript requires me to consult with another person for a second opinion, such as a family member or other known persons with expertise related to the subject matter in your manuscript, I will only do so after obtaining explicit, written permission from you, and will not disclose your identity to them. 
  • My service as a sensitivity reader for your manuscript does not automatically mean an endorsement of your work, a defense against criticism from other parties, or a guarantee that your work is free of any and all problematic content. You may not misuse my name in such contexts.
  • If your manuscript is published, you may include my name (with no other identifying information) in the relevant section of your work.  

Please email me at theshrinkette@gmail.com, if you have any further questions or require clarification of information. If you’re ready to submit a request, please fill out this form.

Author: The Shrinkette

Speed reading aficionado. Unapologetic book pusher. Diversity junkie. Noncompliant. Scotch pundit. Ace. She/her. Point me to the nearest bookshelf. My blog is dedicated exclusively to supporting and promoting marginalized voices.

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