#ContactForm1 { display: none ! important; }

Friday, November 7, 2008

Friday Random

Random Stress of the Week: The Christmas Play... this almighty beast of a thing that somehow I'm not only writing but directing it seems? The play is about the history of the Christmas carol "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" and isn't very long. I wrote it with the sole intention of having it preformed at the church Christmas dinner in lieu of the standard nativity pageant, which is very traditional and inspiring but which will be preformed at every church (including ours) the Sunday before Christmas anyways. As evil as it sounds, I have a limit to how much Nativity I can watch in one holiday season.

So, the play is written, it's been approved. There are solemn parts and funny parts. And now I need actors... Actresses didn't prove to be a problem. I may have to write in some more parts to accommodate all the ladies interested in participating. But I'm missing two key male parts and our first read-through/rehearsal was last night.

Anyone have two younger males to spare? Late teens to early twenties? Can you ship them to me? Please?

Random NaNo Progress of the Week: Word count is currently 10,828. It's Friday morning, I haven't written yet. I intend to be over 13k and much closer to 15k tonight.

Random Pest of the Week: Nearly Normal Nan. That book mugged me last month and won't let go! It's tenacious. Scenes keep popping into my head. It even invaded my dreams the other night. NNN on a spaceship... it made sense at the time.

Random Vice of the Week: The Lost Fleet series by Jack Campbell. I'm addicted. This isn't the first time I've read the books. It isn't even the second or third time. I love the depth of these stories. I can picture the fleet movements. The wide cast of characters is expertly sketched in just a few lines. It's an amazingly well put together plot with just the right amount of tension and lag time.

And in googling Jack Campbell I realize he has two other series out and the next Lost Fleet won't be out until '09.... I am so tempted to go to the book store. I won't finish NaNo, but who needs NaNo when you have military sci-fi to enjoy?

Random Post You Need to Read: Jenny at LitSoup has reasons why the recession is good for aspiring writers. There are days I HATE the fact that writing and editing takes forever. The years between aspiring to write a novel and becoming of of the rare few who see their work excel seems an eternity. But there's a benefit here, the publishing industry takes forever to get things done, but that means that little bumps in the economy don't send authors tumbling out on their ears. Yes, retail sales will be down this Christmas. But since the publishing house is eyeing new talent for 2009 and 2010 this doesn't worry us.

Random Writing Debate of the Week: Gender War! Read up on it HERE.

Actually, this has been going on for some time at various venues and Merc brought it home with her comments yesterday. Merc hates writing females. She just doesn't like them. I have another friend, Yuna, who recoils from writing males. Whenever possible, she'll avoid it.

And than there's me, I guess I'm on the mid-line. I don't have a problem writing either gender. I do tend to have more female characters than male in most my books. But I write male leads often and male POV characters in almost every book. I don't think about the how or why, I just write the character regardless of gender.

But the discussion did bring up some questions for me. How many of you have trouble writing one gender or the other? Is it the other gender? Is it your gender? Why is it so hard? Or is it easy and you just prefer to write one gender over another?

I can think of several books where the genders are unbalanced. And, I admit (sorry J.R.R.) I love the books with balance best. I think that all one gender books tend to limit the reader. I really hate relationship and romance driven books where it's all from one POV. Pride and Prejudice is well written, it's even better with the Fitzwilliam Darcy: Gentleman series sitting open next to it.

Maybe it's because I'm a control freak and want to see the action from every possible angle. But I think part of it is because I live in a culture where there isn't really a dominant gender. In certain areas of any country, this isn't true. But for where I live and my situation here, that isn't the case. Half the moms on my block wear combat boots, shoot M16s, and jump out of planes. My DH cooks and help cleans. Gender roles in our neighborhood and our families seem to vanish after the baby is on solids. So reading a book that has only one gender and one POV comes across as unrealistic and unbalanced.

Unless there is a reason why one gender isn't there.

If you are writing a book set at an all-girls college finding a balanced male/female cast would seem odd. Ditto if you wrote about the Roman senate circa sometime BC and tried to slip in a few female senators to keep the book PC. There will always be exceptions to the rule.

But... come on, I want to hear your thoughts on this. Do you write just one gender? Is that what you prefer to read? Talk to me...

So........What's your random?


  1. Good job on the play!

    So is that word count one WIP alone? I'm at 10778 so far, but your Friday Random is distracting me from writing. You and Inky, I swear.

    So....your question: How many of you have trouble writing one gender or the other? Is it the other gender? Is it your gender? Why is it so hard? Or is it easy and you just prefer to write one gender over another?

    I asked my father-in-law, after he read Breakaway, how accurate I was with my male MCs. He said I did a good job - but that was because they were portrayed through female MC's POV.

    SO.....Monarch is my first attempt (publicly - I have another novel I've never shown anybody that has male POVs - um, Rex Martinez, you've met him) at writing a novel with a male MC. And he's older, too. HOW ON EARTH do I get inside his HEAD????

    I don't know how a 55 year old guy thinks. So I'll be, uh, experimenting a lot. And asking you, Lei, for some good advice. Please?

    I don't prefer one gender over another so far. I like both. But getting into Nicholas Avery's head is weird. He thinks a lot about sex. Is that normal? I'm assuming it is...........

    My Random Today - Do I have to fold laundry this month? Can't I just pile it up on the floor and say to Hubby, "It's NaNo, leave me alone!" ???

    And why haven't you posted a comment on my SS post??? I wrote it with you in mind, my dear. I'd like a response. (Although I'm pretty sure I know what it'll be).

  2. I hate, hate, hate writing from a male POV. I avoid it like the plague. I don't have any brothers,and growing up, my sister and I were about the prissiest girly girls in the history of ever. I'm married now, and my husband's thought processes never cease to amaze me.

    I don't write males because I don't think I'd do them justice. It's like when non-Southern actors try to fake a Southern accent in movies...I'm from the South and we KNOW. It's so obviously fake it's off-putting. Anyway, kudos to women who can write male POV and do it well!

  3. Maybe it's cause I'm a tom boy? To be fair, I don't have many girly girls on my character list. They wouldn't fit the situations and I wouldn't know how to write them short of having a lobotomy.

    Make up? Clothes that match? Ask my FMCs about guns and ways to kill people, it's safer. :o)

    LG- SS post??? Did I miss something? Obviously... I'll go hunt it down.

  4. I don't mind writing from either POV. In fact, all three of my WIPs so far have both a male and female POV. I haven't gotten any complaints about my male POV, so I assume I'm doing something right.

    There are differences, but I think people vary more by personality type than gender.

  5. Interesting linked article. :D

    Do you write just one gender? Is that what you prefer to read?
    I can write, and have written, both. I've said before I prefer guys. ;)

    Yeah, I've always been a tomboy, I always liked the explosions and male-oriented books and movies and TV shows. :P

    Still haven't figured out why the gals annoy me so much, but most of 'em do. ;) By now, I so do not CARE, I go with what I like and if people don't like it, they can deal or read something else. *evil grin*

    Even so, I WILL write Yasha's Mask sometime soon. It's a FMC. I'm doing NaNo that's why I've not touched it. honest! O:)


  6. Yay for the play.

    *looks for boys she can box and ship*

    How much would shipping be, do ya think?

    Re gender wars: My stories are more character driven than plot driven. I have plot, but it's the characters that decide what that is. That being said, so long as I can identify with the character, it doesn't really matter which gender they are--they come across loud and clear.

    Myles was incredibly easy to write. He wrote himself in. Didn't like being in the background and demanded his own POV scenes. Breren was easy too. The hardest character for me to write was Mara because she was so dang complicated. The words were there, she just gave them up, grudgingly. At least Anara is coming across...swimmingly. ;)
    (Bad pun. She's the little mermaid that isn't Ariel. She just nearly drowned her human friend. Oops.)

    Random: ... ... ... ...I'm reading Cybele's Secret and it's freaking me out. A little. But that's what nightlights were invented for, yes? :)

  7. Random of the day? The word verification says 'ponsanks'.

    Gender - eh, I write both. I think at present I have more FMCs, but even so only my MG fantasy series for girls doesn't have a male POV character. (Yet. My POVs have ways of multiplying %-)).

    As long as the character is well rounded and appropriately characterised for their situation, their gender doesn't bother me - either to write, or to read.