It’s often suggested to write what we know. Taking that to its extremes one can only write about oneself! Everything else is a stretch. Descartes said I think therefore I am. Want to write a historical novel, you weren’t alive then so how could you know. Want to write a character of the opposite sex, sorry you have the wrong equipment and mindset. Want to write about a person of a different race or culture, sorry, where do you get off.
All humans have hearts. That’s all you need to know to start. Knowing something in depth comes from study, research, observation, getting involved as best you can in the culture, race, time, situation. The richness of fiction would be lost without you the writer leaping off that cliff and because it’s fiction, you have wings.
What irks me is when someone in my industry questions how a male writer can write female characters, or enjoy romance. I inwardly laugh at this because the obvious counter is how can you write about males. Give up. Go home. Another rube is you can’t possibly know how I feel. The answer is yes I can. Maybe not with your intensity, but having a heart, I know. I write what I know. The emotion and commitment to civil and equal rights courses through my heart and keeps me alive.
Finally, some men actually enjoy romance. Some estimates put it at 30%. But what do men know? They fall in love too, otherwise, ladies, it would be better to hug a tree because it doesn’t bark back.
This blog, when I get around to it, will turn into a book on the male point of view in romance writing hopefully soon. The first couple years of this blog (long ago) is published as an ebook https://www.amazon.com/Tips-Primarily-Writing-Male-Characters-ebook/dp/B01A2GNKVM/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=rw+richard&qid=1581808990&s=digital-text&sr=1-3
The next release will be definitive, complete, and only include tips on writing male characters. Guess what, you don’t need this book or the future one. You have a heart.