Authors: Male vs Female

Sharon Bakar has posted up a fascinating piece she wrote for Chrome magazine in January 2006, which struck me not because of its truth (the publishing industry is well aware of the stigma surrounding female authors) but the quotes from some of her readers.

For the uninitiated, her article is about how men prefer to read male authors, opting out of reading prose written by the fairer sex. Listen to this:

… (a) blogger, Amir, felt that “prose written by a lot of female authors tends to be, how do you say it? Delicate? Detailed? Ditzy?”.

“I don’t think women can write like Marquez, Nabokov or Gunther Grass,” wrote one blogger known as Greenbottle, “to me these guys write as though with p*nis instead of pen, full of masculine animal energy.” He felt that many women writers, on the other hand, tended to produce “saccharine, wimpy or effeminate writing”.

If that was the case I would’ve never read The Age Of Innocence – one of my absolute favourites. Nothing like heart rending, heart stopping dialogue as a warmup.

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