Well, obviously I’m ambitious. And rash. And slightly mad. I’ve always been an irregular blogger but somehow, I’m now committed to two blog projects. Opat’s Japanese Literature Reading Challenge and Books and Strips’ Femme Friday.
(I will say upfront that posting for both will always likely to be sporadic. I’ll do my best but slow writer me won’t force myself to churn out posts.)
I blame Books and Strips for creating a project that pings all my sweet spots. What do you mean you tagged us to write about women and literature every Friday, Vicky? Oh, and the rules are super loose? I can write about women writers (prominent and/or underrated)? I can write about women-run publishing houses? I can wax lyrical about awesome fictional female characters???
I’M IN! I’M IN!!! (Will you shut up, rational part of my brain that tries to rescind my ugly habit of making promises far too easily?)
I’ve always thought my bookshelves are skewed towards lady writers, but that’s not necessarily true. There’s a pretty good balance between male and female authors there, and that makes me happier than if my shelves were mostly female. Support equality, not imbalance!
That said, I do genuinely believe that women in the literary world, be they writers or publishers, are still in need of more visibility. Things are getting better, I think. Yet better doesn’t mean equal.
I also have issues with the term “strong female character.” Too often, writers substitute depth and personality in a female character with brute strength. To be fair, these authors are afraid of unthinking criticism if they made any female characters physically weak (I can hear the “sexist!” and “damsel in distress = garbage!” online lynches already). But to me, personally, a good fictional character is one with a rich inner life, with their own individual flaws and yearnings and stories. That should be the only criteria for a good character, be they male or female, in my opinion.
(If you disagree with any points I have made, please say so! I enjoy discussion. I only request you disagree respectfully. We all have different viewpoints)
Women in literature is a topic I deeply care about so I’d be very happy if you want to discuss the issue or even join Books and Strips’ Femme Friday project.
My first post for Femme Friday will be something more light-hearted: a general introduction to the delightful, the wonderful British press Persephone Books. I hope you didn’t yawn too loudly. Yes, I’m aware Persephone Books is pretty well-known in the book blogosphere. But a little more tooting couldn’t hurt!
I have a lot of future ideas of what I want to write for Femme Friday, but as of now, they’re still half-baked and in need of fleshing out. Not to mention, I’m a super slow writer in general. Books and Strips will be lucky to see one Femme Friday post a month from me. Ayayay!