T & A: Struggling With How To Depict Female Characters In The Age Of The ‘Woke Cancel Culture Mob’

by Shelt Garner

I really enjoy developing and writing female characters because it’s so much more of a challenge than male characters. And YET, the whole notion of me, a smelly CIS white male, writing from a female point of view is fraught with potential problems.

Ugh. ‘Woke’ people.

There are so young women on Tik-Tok are quite strident in their belief that, by definition, I can not write from a female POV. And that is just the beginning of what the potential creative landmines I have to deal with when I do something as now-provocative as write from a female POV.

Again, as an aside, let me be clear — had I know what a potential pain in the ass doing any of this would be, I wouldn’t have done it. But I studied Stieg Larsson’s original Millennium series and HE wrote from a female POV all the time so when I started working on what could now be a seven novel project…I didn’t really give it much thought.

From what I can tell of the “woke cancel culture mob” Tik-Toks I get pushed on occasion, one big quibble that some “woke” readers have is the what they feel is the gratuitous tendency for male authors — like me — to talk about tits and ass.

As someone who actually writing a novel, I really struggle with the idea that this is some big deal. One of the thing that is so appealing about female as opposed to male characters is there is so much to work with. Because women are so much more judged on what they look like than men, the writer — that would be me — has a lot to work with.

This is the general phonotype of my heroine.

So, the issue of how big my female character’s breasts might be is actually pertinent — in my view — when it comes to describing her to the audience. Hell, Stieg Larsson spend a long-ish scene talking about how and why Lisbeth Salander got breast implants. This is especially important when should there be a need to give the reading audience some sense of the character’s self-perception.

All of this sturm and drang about how horrible it is that smelly CIS white males like me talking about tits and ass gives me a great deal of self-conscious stress. I just want to present my female characters as interesting and engaging as possible and sometimes I feel that I need to, in a matter-of-fact kind of way describe their bodies and their self-perception and interaction with them.

The ‘woke’ always have their eye on you. Wink.

It should not be that big a deal if I do it all in a non-salacious manner. I’m WELL AWARE that some ding-dong male authors use their female character as an opportunity to design characters they clearly want to fuck.

Ok, I get it.

While we’re on the subject of female characters, I must note that my one big quibble about Stieg Larsson’s work is how ALL of his female characters are good. It seems a disservice to both the story and the audience for there to be no female characters who are not on the side of good.

Now, obviously, I haven’t really read the post-Larsson novels published by his estate, so that issue may have been fixed.

Anyway. What do I know. I’m a smelly CIS white male. I should nothing at all but sit in my dark bedroom, twiddle my thumbs and stare at the ceiling.

Author: Shelton Bumgarner

I am the Editor & Publisher of The Trumplandia Report

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