Romance By Catherine: Male / Female ~ Who wins the prize?

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Male / Female ~ Who wins the prize?

I don't often debate on my blog, but hey... once in a while I like to stir the pot a little.

As a member of RWA, I am informed about things going on in the industry. A recent article spoke about how books written by men are more likely to be reviewed than books written by women. Click HERE to read the article I'm talking about.

I try to avoid getting upset about things I can't change so I'll leave this topic alone... Kinda. But the article did spark a few thoughts in my brain.

Why is romance such a gender specific genre? And why is it that if a man reads and reviews a book people listen to him more than if he were a woman? Why is a book written by a man about relationships, maybe even a love interest, considered literature and the same book written by a woman simply romance? Why do love stories written by men make it on the sliver screen? These chick-flicks are completely romance, detailed love scenes and all... yet because they're written by a man they capture the attention of tens of thousands of people. I've read a gazillion romance novels, many of which would make amazing movies... so how do we fight the gender barrier? Do we write under a male name?

I suppose maybe we need to follow Nora Roberts example, she using the name J.D. Robb for her less romancy, more actiony books, is in order. Hmmm, C.J. Bybee... *shakes head*

I guess I need to go back to my earlier comment... Don't stress about things I can't change. Hey, if Harlequin could care less about attracting the attention of male readers, I shouldn't waste time thinking about why male authors get the attention.

I'm a woman writing for women. I'm not sure too many men outside of my father have read my books. *shrugs shoulders* Hey, that's half the population to entertain. I can live with that!


Kaye Manro said...

LOL-- great post, Catherine. We are at least half the population or more!

Emma Lai said...

What a powder keg, Catherine.

I could say male writers get the attention because no matter how long ago women got the vote, most industries-like motion pictures-are still male-dominated. I could say men have unique insight into the male psyche, which is so very complex. *Snicker.*

But, I won't say either of those things...oops, I did.

Seriously, maybe it's the fact that a male author can write a total dog of a hero who suddenly matures in the end and get away with it while we women feel compelled to write our heroes flawed, but redeemable. Maybe the answer's not to use a male pseudonym, but to let some unlucky heroine get stuck with a dog who has potential.