I feel like I ought to link to the current big YA brouhaha: Agent asks authors to “straighten” main character.
This is not the first time I’ve heard of something like this happening, and it’s appalling, to be sure.
I just want to add my data point to the debate, however: my book, in all its incarnations, has always had gay characters in it. There was even a transsexual in one version (who sadly is no more, not for being transsexual but because I was having to engage in painful, artificial plot-acrobatics to keep her). I have never, ever, not ONCE been asked by my agent or either of my editors* to change anything about these characters.
Let’s call it out when it happens – that’s important! – but don’t imagine publishing is some kind of monolith. Good books will find a home. Keep writing, and don’t despair.
* Yes, I’ve been through two editors. I think I broke the first one.
Edited to add: Was the title of this post too obscure? Here’s what I was referencing: