Friday, July 27, 2012

The Writer Will Take Your Questions Now (#193) -- Female Protagonists

What's with your preference for writing female protagonists? 

The Fool, from Show Me A Hero.
Let's face it, women are far more interesting than us men. It's just truth that we need to accept. Both genders of characters have their stereotypes to break out of, but both also have so much fun to be had while playing fast and loose with those stereotypes.

Part of it, I think, stems from that fact then when I was a beginning writer, I couldn't write the female voice at all, well, not without sucking bigtime anyway. The only clues I could provide that a character was female were the physical ones, such as references to wearing a bra or pantyhose.

Whoa. So talented!  I know. (Yes, that's sarcasm.)

So I drove myself hard to learn to write the female voice. If I'm going to be a real writer, I figured, I needed to learn to write anyone's voice, red or yellow, black or white, man or woman, boy or girl or two-headed Beeezlesnord from Planet X (they are precious in his sight). Anyone.

The best compliment I ever received as a writer came from a fan who wrote me an email fan letter during my time on staff with Cyber Age Adventures magazine. She told me how wonderful it was to have another woman writing kick-ass super hero fiction. I felt bad to have to tell her (so far as apologizing for it) that I wasn't a female. Still, what a powerful compliment!

Female characters to me have so many more depths to explore. Perhaps that's just because I'm a man, and to a female writer, writing male characters would be the same. I don't know. But for me, that's how it goes.