It seems like every book I read has a girl in it that is kind, sweet, and relatively innocent about the world. The women who aren’t always come across as broken, being snarky to protect themselves, or such. It’s social conditioning that we’re not even aware that we’re doing to ourselves. Considering that most writers AND readers are women, this might be a problem.
I write books that I want to read. I try my hardest to write the kind of books I never found, but went looking for. My goal is to create stories about people that I believe are possible. To clarify – the people are possible, not the stories. I don’t really think that aliens are going to crash in North Carolina. I do believe that not every girl in the world would see that and panic. Some of us might be scared at first, but more curious than interested in running around screaming.
I also think that women’s sexuality is a problem. Just think about it for a moment, there’s no female equivalent to “stud” in our language. A “playboy” or “player” is a term for a man. What are the feminine counterparts? Slut? Whore?
And why is it always the man’s job to do the picking up. Where are the stories about the women who say “he’s hot, I want him”? What about the rich ladies who are looked at fondly from a distance by their male admirer? I get that we want our men to be strong, to protect us, and to help fix all the problems. It’s kinda coded in our DNA, and imprinted by our society. We can’t help it. This is what women find sexy.
But doesn’t that typically result in the woman being weak? In some manner, she’s relegated to a position of subordination by the very stories we’re writing. Why not equality? It’s not really that hard to do. It DOES mean that we need to think about relationships a bit differently.
Rochelle’s Reviews often comments on my “men”. They aren’t alpha males. They aren’t cruel, living on a power trip, or whatever. They are strong, yet kind; powerful, but never better than their love interest; protective without being a caveman. What I want people to see are my women.
I want to write women who remind my readers that it’s ok to like sex. That there’s nothing wrong in putting a career over a man. That sometimes she might have more sexual experience than her potential lover – and that it’s OK. There are a zillion confused virgins out there in literary land. What I want to write are all the other shades of female sexuality and dominance. I want to let women like myself know that they aren’t alone, that it’s ok to be however they are. That some girls want to grow up and be a mommy, but others want to find the perfect stay at home dad. I want to write books for the readers who think outside the box.
I’m pretty sure that’s going to upset a few people. Know what? I don’t really care. Growing up, I always wanted to read stories about women like me, but the only ones I found were always written as something to be ashamed of. Well, let me assure you, I’m not ashamed of being different.
I’m damned proud of it, and we all deserve to feel that way.