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Saturday, February 2, 2013

Free Gender Check

I will be your host next week, so I am posting this a little early to give you time to ponder...

One of the (many) things writers worry about is portraying the opposite sex accurately. And it's well that they should; we're different creatures, men and women. But there are enough similarities, along with those differences, to make anybody loopy.

This has been on my mind because I've recently been engaged in a lengthy discussion of gender roles. I didn't want to subject you all to a week's worth of ramblings about actual and hypothetical social construction of genders... you're welcome... so let's do some critiquing.

I am CALLING FOR SUBMISSIONS of a scene wherein you are concerned about whether your opposite-gender character is acting "appropriately." What that means, exactly, is a hazy thing. We're talking about individual characters, not stereotypes. And we're not talking about specific behaviors like leaving wet towels on the bed -- I mean the more general "would a guy admit to this?" "would a woman freak out over that?" sort of thing. You'll probably get hazy answers, but we'll try to keep it all gender-oriented.

On second thought, I'll include outlines/synopses in this, too, if you're concerned about the character's behavior over an entire story.

Submissions can be up to 1,500 words. Please try to explain your concerns in the email. A brief character sketch for the character in question would probably help too -- is this meant to be a macho guy? a girly girl? a sensitive, artistic type?

Email to unicornbellsubmissions at gmail dot com, subject line "Gender Check."

Since we're mostly women here, I expect a lot of scenes involving male behavior -- and I hope some men will offer their thoughts on submitted scenes. But I also think that if enough women apply their personal experiences of men to the submissions, we can offer useful insights as well.

If you all FAIL to submit, I may be forced to ramble about social constructions of gender. You've been warned. :D


M. J. Joachim said...

Interesting idea here...my mind is on overload with this one. Blog post in the works, perhaps. No scenes to submit, but you've definitely stirred the cobwebs in my brain...

Huntress said...

Curious and veddy inteeeresting.

Teen and adolescent-speak doubles the problem. Put a writer into the opposite gender and forty years younger and, BANG, all kinds of stuff happens.
CD Coffelt prowls at Spirit Called