Cover Photo: An illustration of a person wearing headphones and sitting in front of a microphone while holding an open book in front of their face. Several books in pink, blue, and yellow exist between the reader's mouth and the microphone, as if a series of layers of barriers. The background is blue and pink.
Illustration by Sirin Thada for Catapult

Trans Voices Belong in the Recording Booth Too

Contributing to the small body of trans-narrated, trans-written audiobooks felt both personally affirming and politically necessary.

This isThe Sound of My Voice, a series on the craft, process, and stakes of recording audiobooks.

Is this really what my voice sounds like?

Myra BreckinridgeNevadaDetransition, BabyMyra Breckinridge

New York TimesCemetery Boys

Xtra Magazine

Boy with a Bird in His Chest


As a result, Talusan said, people often perceive her voice as that of a cis woman unless she deliberately increases her chest resonance while speaking. Her vocal fluidity helped her challenge the expectation that voices “should” sound particular ways based on gender. This quality was also a boon to listeners. The rare opportunity to hear a trans voice brings our books to life by adding an intimate dimension that fleshes out the work. Voice and voice quality go beyond literary devices like “tone.” They can be a storytelling tool, itself in service of honoring trans experiences and stories.

C. R. Foster is a queer, nonbinary trans writer from Portland, Oregon. Their critically acclaimed short story collection Shine of the Ever is available from Interlude Press.