Sensitivity Reading ($450 and up)

What Is Sensitivity Reading?
The purpose of sensitivity reading is to help writers create more genuine and respectful portrayals of marginalized communities so that more people can see themselves represented in literature and other kinds of media. Having the perspective of a reader from one or more of these communities can help a writer reach their reader and make a profound connection.
I read all lengths of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry on characters, themes, and research related to the following:
  • immigrant experience during the Trump era;
  • immigration from countries of the post-Soviet space and earlier Soviet immigration;
  • twentieth-century Russian-Jewish (or Jewish-Russian, as you prefer) experience;
  • Soviet and Jewish generational trauma; 
  • women and gender in the Soviet Union;
  • late Soviet culture and society (1950-1991); and
  • grammatically and stylistically correct Russian, including transliteration per the Library of Congress standard used by the Chicago Manual of Style.
I came to the United States as a Jewish refugee from the newly formed Russian Federation in 1993. I hold a PhD in Slavic languages and literature, and am a former program director for a Russian language program at a major research university. I have been an editor since 2015, working extensively with literary authors, Slavic Studies faculty and graduate students, and an academic publisher specializing in Russian literature and culture.
How Does This Work?
You would start by sending me an email at 
Here is what I will need from you:
  1. A brief project summary including
    • Word count.
    • Genre.
    • The writing stage you are currently in; i.e., accepted for publication, early draft, etc.
    • Timeline expectations for your sensitivity read.
  2. Information about what you are looking for from a sensitivity reader.
  3. Any  questions you have for me and /or anything else you feel like I should know upfront about your project
  4. The manuscript (or, if you prefer, the first two chapters and the last two chapters). 
I will reply to you with a quote. If you accept, then the exciting part begins!
Would you like to work together? Find me at

I'm so happy Olga edited the Russian dialogue in my YA novel. What a difference her changes made. Now, I have real Russian spoken in the story! Thank you, Olga!

— JoAnne Keltner