Ask a male author about your male character traits or thoughts.

Amazon links to my stories: Autumn Breeze, A More Perfect Union, Double Happiness, The Wolves of Sherwood Forest, Neanderthals and the Garden of Eden can be found down the right side of the blog.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Write a better man (or the start of the masculist movement).


The start of Masculism or the Masculist movement. August 7, 2013

Feminism has been around for thousands of years, whether it be a matriarchal stone age tribe or Gloria Steinem, Betty Friedan, Joan Baez (and others) standing for freedom. I was there and joined in when feminists marched for equality. I helped remove and burn their bras (oh no, that was a dream, I think). I believe in equal rights. So . . .

When I see men portrayed in a stereotypical manner by some female romance writers (present company and my friends excluded) I try to suspend disbelief, but often end up laughing (and putting the book down). The heros are no where near real.

Stereotypes are based on observable reality, but they also represent a diminished self. Whether it’s a woman who always ignores logic in favor of emotion or a man who kills first and asks questions later. Unfortunately for men, many of their stereotypes are psychotic. And because of this ‘fatal flaw’ we as writers can easily slip into writing a psychotic or sociopathic character.

Psychotic or sociopathic characters to veer away from, IMO.

Men who shoot to kill without regard to lessor but still effective alternatives. Can you think of a recent example? Somebody made a series of ever increasing blunders.

Men who imprison a female or females. Can you think of a recent example? Do we give a pass to the Lord or Knight who does this? Remember the code of chivalry? Had they not been schooled? Had they not mothers (or fathers)? Can a reader draw an analogy to some present day psycho and burn the romance book that portrays this character.

Men who rip off people. Sorry, this is ‘too’ fatal a flaw for me. You can have your bad boys all you want but this is too much. Hurting people mentally, spiritually, or physically should be left for other genres and certainly not the hero.

A college educated man without humanity.

A sexist pig who suddenly gets religion when around the heroine. What’s actually happening here ladies: he wants to get in her pants and pretends to be what she wants.

Avoid stereotypes. If you want to mix in these flaws make sure your recipe includes an inner conflict by the hero and make it far more subtle. Ask that guy in your life. Ask me if you would like some feedback.

When the most complete feminist movement started in the sixties, they were much maligned. They were stereotyped as man hating, Godless, Nazis. It was horrible to be with my female friends and suffer the press’s reaction leveled at these wonderful loving women, my friends and lovers.

“The only way for a woman, as for a man, to find herself, to know herself as a person, is by creative work of her own.”
Betty Friedan, The Feminine Mystique

So, why not write a better man.

Betterman by Pearl Jam
 
 

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