Fifty Percent of the Adventures
When I was a child I loved, and I still love, stories of women and girls triumphing over adversity. Books like Anne of Green Gables and Little Women were among my favorites. I have also always loved adventure and fantasy stories. As a young girl, I read and reread Treasure Island, The Hobbit, Gulliver’s Travels, and other epic tales.
As I got older, I realized there was little overlap in adventure stories and female-centric stories. I started to wonder why women weren’t going on adventures. In the stories I read about women, they reached adulthood, got married, and that was it. That was the end of their story. If a woman was present in the story, it was not her story, she was the one being rescued and/or she was a love interest to be won at the end of the grand and perilous journey.
I wanted to read about girls, and later women, like myself. I wanted a female in science fiction and fantasy stories, as the hero, as the main character, and as someone fierce and real. So, I started writing those stories. When I was young, writing women wasn’t revolutionary feminism; it was natural to write main characters the same gender as myself.
When I reached adulthood, I had another realization: even when the main character of a fantasy or sci-fi is female, she’s almost always a girl or a teenager. There were hardly any adult women going on fantastic adventures, and there was no similar shortage of adult men fighting their way through far-off galaxies and exotic landscapes.
In the past few decades, there has been a reversal of this men-and-girls-only trend, but we still have a long way to go. When I’m asked in interviews why I write so many women characters, I always answer “women are fifty percent of the population, so they should be having fifty percent of the fantastic adventures.”
6/1/2019 03:54:55 pm
Im currently writting a book callled Shadows and Ash the mirror of bone and blood. I have a race of female warriors called Angelus that were created by Necromancers to fight in their war against the Necromancers ememies the mages. The Angelus are adult women who fight nude, because they enjoy the feel of blood spraying on their skin. They also feed off emotional and physically pain. I was wondering if you had any advice for me, on how to make them the best characters possible. Thank you.
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