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Questions tagged [gender]

For questions that deal with the representation of the social construct of gender in your writing.

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Tips on writing a transgender character?

I have a transgender oc, Rocky, born Rochelle. He's like eight. He doesn't know anything about LGBTQ+ people or that his twin sister Rosamie (Rosie) is a lesbian and has her own struggles and will ...
YourLocalTheyHer's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
3k views

How do I write from a male's POV?

I am a female who is writing from two points of view: one being a female and one being a male. It is also a romance/mystery novel. I noticed when some of my male friends read it they said that some of ...
CandyCane's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
244 views

How should I switch between different pronouns when writing a nonbinary/genderqueer character?

(For refrence, I'm trans, and have done my research on this stuff.) A character from a story I'm writing is nonbinary/genderqueer. Basically, they just don't care about gender. I really want to write ...
ratKING28's user avatar
1 vote
5 answers
156 views

Is there a smooth way to indicate that third person pronouns don't matter so much in my worldbuilding in English?

For context, I am nonbinary, and also East Asian. My language of fluency is English, but I know other languages and also have an anthropology degree. (Japanese, Korean, a tiny, tiny bit of Mandarin, ...
Kim Yoonmi--Surname first's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
40 views

Not revealing my MC's gender [duplicate]

I couldn't decide on whether the protagonist should be a girl or a boy. The MC's gender would just never be revealed and nobody would care about it, like in Undertale. Readers would barely question it ...
Violet's user avatar
  • 1
1 vote
2 answers
108 views

How do you write a strong female character?

I've heard people talk about how they don't like the 'strong female character' story in hero movies because they're written bad, but how is a good strong female character written?
Chelsea Fay's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
174 views

Should I go out of my way to write certain female archetypes out of my stories?

Should I go out of my way to write certain female archetypes out of my stories? I think some archetypes for female characters are offensive. For example, there's the femme fatale archetype. The femme ...
Sayaman's user avatar
  • 14.9k
4 votes
3 answers
275 views

Pronouns for a character that body hops?

I'm currently writing a paranormal thriller novel where people can inhabit other peoples' bodies -- regardless of sex, gender identity, or sexuality. I'm currently in moral turmoil over how to use ...
T Kitto's user avatar
  • 43
11 votes
6 answers
4k views

Is there any pronoun in English that can include both HE and SHE?

Some languages like Persian do not have gender for pronouns. For example, they use just one pronoun (Ou) to refer to he/she. This makes the language gender-neutral which to me it is more convenient in ...
Amin Kaveh's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
386 views

How can I balance a male character saving his love interest without making the female seem incompetent (and vice versa)?

Stories for many, many years made frequent use of the damsel in distress trope, where female characters are depicted as needing men to save them in big, dramatic displays. People eventually realized ...
user2352714's user avatar
  • 4,685
1 vote
2 answers
182 views

Using they singular sounds grammatically incorrect

I asked this question some weeks ago. I have settled on using they/them But using they/them singular sounds weird and grammatically incorrect. IE: They is struggling in school Compared to the plural ...
Coder2195's user avatar
  • 239
8 votes
8 answers
6k views

What pronouns should I use for a character with no gender?

I'm writing a book in which there is a character with no gender. I don't know what pronouns I should use for this character. I can't use he/she. What pronouns should I use? Example: With gender: She ...
Coder2195's user avatar
  • 239
6 votes
5 answers
1k views

How do I make a headstrong female character likable and not annoying?

I have a story where one of my lead characters is a headstrong young woman. In terms of personality she is hyperactive, energetic, and charismatic, but at the same time these traits make her arrogant, ...
user2352714's user avatar
  • 4,685
1 vote
1 answer
113 views

How do I tastefully handle a female-to-male transforming character?

My character is a girl who is later revealed in my story to be under a curse that allows her to transform into an older man. She is sharing a body with a powerful male spirit who can take control and ...
Kennichi Nitta's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
535 views

How do I keep my character's gender a complete mystery?

At first my protagonist was going to be a female role, until I started having an inclination for male characters and the fact that I am a total BL (“boy’s love”, stories about male homosexual romance) ...
Crown English's user avatar
0 votes
5 answers
593 views

Should I write his/her or their? [duplicate]

I am new in this site and I hope to convey my question in a correct manner. Any employee is also entitled to receive a reference letter. This document must contain an assessment on the performance of ...
Manuel Aburto Mena's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
414 views

How to do a non-binary character?

I'm currently writing a novel in my spare time, though I like how it's going. The main character is a non-binary young adult, I try hard to make sure it doesn't sound off when people are using they/...
Kinu's user avatar
  • 51
4 votes
1 answer
280 views

How do I write a character with gender dysphoria?

So I'm partaking in a DnD 5e home brew game, and in the near-ish future my male character is going to be turned into a female character without knowing and without willingness. My question is, how do ...
LucidLucario's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
429 views

How to write a female character that is not just a genderflipped male character?

Recently I submitted a comic book story to a publisher, and they criticized that the main character is basically just a shonen protagonist (for example, Son Goku from Dragon Ball, Ash from Pokemon, ...
M Arif Rahman Winandar's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
313 views

How do I know if my cast is diverse enough or too diverse? [duplicate]

Basically, I am writing a story and I want to know if the characters are diverse enough or too diverse. If I just state the characters' races, sexualities, etc, it might seem forced but I didn't ...
user avatar
16 votes
7 answers
4k views

Subverting the emotional woman and stoic man trope

In my post-apocalyptic story, the split of male and female main/supporting characters is 50/50. The girls and women in the story, Eris, Marina, and Ezrith, display very little emotion--Eris ...
user avatar
22 votes
15 answers
7k views

Pronouns when writing from the point of view of a robot

For the writing challenge, I'm currently writing from the point of view of a robot. Also another robot is frequently addressed. However I've hit a problem: Referring to the robots as “it” often gives ...
celtschk's user avatar
  • 4,017
24 votes
14 answers
6k views

How do I present a future free of gender stereotypes without being jarring or overpowering the narrative?

My story takes place in a relatively near future setting where gender stereotypes have become a thing of the past. Unlike a recent question on another site, physiological sex-specific traits are still ...
Robert Columbia's user avatar
43 votes
12 answers
13k views

Averting Real Women Don’t Wear Dresses

Real Women Don’t Wear Dresses is when writers portray female characters possessing traditional feminine qualities as being less desirable, competent and reliable instead of their tomboy foils. They ...
user avatar
23 votes
7 answers
6k views

How do I create uniquely male characters?

In How to write strong female characters, Standback says that the best way to write a strong female character is to make her uniquely female, the type of character that can not possibly be male and ...
TMuffin's user avatar
  • 2,008
41 votes
13 answers
18k views

Avoiding the "not like other girls" trope?

The "not like other girls" trope is pretty common in young adult fiction, arguably misogynistic, and usually applied to a female protagonist or love interest. Attempts to make a female character ...
user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
1k views

How to describe my character using they/them so the reader doesn't know their gender until their pronouns show up later?

I'm experimenting with writing nonbinary or generally gender-ambiguous characters in my writing. The most recent example of this is in an urban fantasy story I'm currently working on in my spare time, ...
N. Dosker's user avatar
  • 347
8 votes
5 answers
3k views

How to portray a character with gender dysphoria?

Context In my fantasy novel-in-progress, one of the two main characters has a close friend he's known since childhood. Both of them are greatly developed by their interactions with each other ...
Sciborg's user avatar
  • 8,752
12 votes
3 answers
6k views

How would we write a misogynistic character without offending people?

In a short story I am writing, I have this misogynistic character who keeps saying misogynistic stuff, and I thought it would be a bad idea to give him dialogue lines. I was thinking that, because I ...
puffofsmoke's user avatar
2 votes
7 answers
222 views

Will my book have a better chance at being successful if I include more gender diversity in it?

My novel so far only contains female main characters. There are some male characters, but they are few and far between, and only play minor roles. Obviously it's hard to predict if any book is going ...
klippy's user avatar
  • 2,041
24 votes
11 answers
10k views

Is it bad to have no gender variety?

The majority of stories, movies, shows, comics, and other media I've read or seen have a pretty even split between men and women, and that's fine, I don't have a problem with it. But if I want to ...
user avatar
19 votes
7 answers
5k views

Realistically incorporating trans/nonbinary characters

In most books I read and movies I watch, there are rarely any LGBT characters, and the LGBT representation I do see is almost exclusively gay men, with a smaller amount of lesbians and a handful of ...
user avatar
73 votes
12 answers
21k views

A critic made a comment that my female character sounds like she was written by a man

I'm a man. Working on my sci-fi novel. It's meant to be a light-hearted heist caper. My main character is a woman. She's a strong and sassy character based on the women in my life, and the story ...
Ty_xy's user avatar
  • 741
18 votes
6 answers
9k views

How do I justify a mansplainer/misogynist?

I have a male character who is coming across as patronizing and mansplain-y. He has several scenes where he tells a (different) female protagonist how she should behave, or assumes she doesn't ...
wetcircuit's user avatar
  • 27.2k
1 vote
4 answers
397 views

How to balance male protagonist sensitivity to women

My MC is an assassin by trade and has a military background - sniper, Special Ops, etc. He was raised partly by his sister after their parents died in a car accident. He normally listens to her as she ...
Rasdashan's user avatar
  • 12.3k
5 votes
4 answers
951 views

How to add depth to primary female character that contrasts well with primary male characters

I am attempting to write a relatively complex SciFi military novel following 3 primary characters. A male and female protagonist, and a male antagonist. So far none of those characters are aware of ...
TitaniumTurtle's user avatar
37 votes
3 answers
5k views

What is meant by "purposeful, habitual, and gratuitous" actions?

In his "Characters" essay, Samuel R. Delany purports there are three types of actions to characters: "purposeful, habitual, and gratuitous." He also defends that, in a novel, if "a character [is] ...
dkaeae's user avatar
  • 493
23 votes
12 answers
7k views

Need advice about changing character's gender

I had this idea for a story/novel that I was very excited about, but also very worried about. The idea had a plot where the character development plot and themes all grow and go together, something I ...
worried writer's user avatar
8 votes
8 answers
3k views

How to write female characters as a male writer?

Yesterday I asked a question about writing a female character who has agency. Much to my surprise, it was well-received and generated a lot of great discussion. In reading that discussion, however, ...
J.D. Ray's user avatar
  • 954
36 votes
10 answers
13k views

How to write female characters with agency?

I'm attempting to write a novel, an historical fiction with a small fantasy component (time travel through a portal). The travelers (main characters) are a young couple from the late 23rd Century who ...
J.D. Ray's user avatar
  • 954
6 votes
3 answers
489 views

How to indicate that the source language is gender-neutral?

The source language in question is Standard Chinese. It is a gender-neutral language. One big thing that English speakers complain about English is the gendered pronoun, namely the third person ...
Double U's user avatar
  • 2,512
73 votes
24 answers
22k views

How do I know if a concept is sexist or not?

In my story's world, witchcraft is a respected institution, with the most powerful practitioners being at the top echelons of society. Due to this, society traces its lineage through matrilineal lines....
Incognito's user avatar
  • 1,981
17 votes
5 answers
11k views

How do male and female writing styles differ?

Many of my stories have two protagonists, one male, one female, and are told alternately from both viewpoints. I don't find it difficult to show the differing personalities through the different ways ...
user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
349 views

Moving away from a gender-based analysis

I'm writing a short essay on gender undercurrents of conversations, i.e. how do different people approach communication and problem-solving in their relationships. One way to phrase this is in terms ...
Buddhapus's user avatar
  • 183
20 votes
15 answers
8k views

What pronoun should a hermaphrodite species use?

In my fantasy novel, I have a species that is fully hermaphroditic: all individuals have both male and female reproductive organs. Like garden snails. Consequently, they have only one gender. They ...
Galastel supports GoFundMonica's user avatar
15 votes
5 answers
17k views

How to describe a female character's figure without comedy?

Do you know a good way to describe a female character's figure? I'm writing a fairly serious story, but the only way I know how to describe this is from comedy stories, where they work out some joke ...
user29283's user avatar
  • 159
63 votes
12 answers
19k views

What's the least distracting method to inform editors I'm a woman?

I have a gender-neutral name, so people often assume I'm a man. However, a portion of the writing I do is for tech companies. Because of the lack of diversity in the tech industry, many of these ...
Morgan Meredith's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
239 views

How can I write God with a more feminine aspect and introduce it into my culture's mythology?

I want to write a religion similar to Christianity but with God represented as feminine. It is meant to highlight the differences between the sexes and emphasise traits associated with women over men. ...
user avatar
6 votes
9 answers
6k views

Can I name a male character Artemis?

So I'm writing a story and there is a character that is a male that I want to name Artemis. The reason, simply put, is that he has a sister with a name I really like that is TECHNICALLY a boy's name (...
APODO's user avatar
  • 61
10 votes
12 answers
4k views

How to write from the male point of view?

Friends. I am female, and have recently decided that my first book's titular character is going to be a boy of an age between nineteen and twenty. I would like some help as to how to go about ...
Jack Rabbit's user avatar
  • 1,307