I never really thought I’d start my writing career with ‘women’s fiction’. My favorite author was Terry Pratchett, my favorite mangaka Kaori Yuki and I loved magical girl animes and Princess stories. When I wrote my first sixty-page novel in fifth grade, it was a dragon story. In high school I became fixated on vampires and the occult, and recently went into a fascination with faerie lore.
But the story I got out first was women’s fiction- a story laid out in the ‘real world’ that revolved around a female character and some major events of her life. Even as a re-telling of Beauty and the Beast, I intentionally left out magic because the story I wanted to tell involved how fairy-tale relationships would play out in real life.
Now with two books in that series published, and the third coming out this July, I’m beginning to wonder why ‘women’s fiction’.
Not ‘why write this instead of fantasy’ but ‘why women’s?’. And not ‘why write female characters’ but ‘why not just say you write general fiction?’. When I was convinced as a child that I was going to start right out the gate with dragon stories with big heroines, I didn’t think of them as ‘women’s fantasy’ just because the characters are female and might, on the off chance, appeal to women more. So why shortchange myself as a writer now?
Sure, the Once Upon A Reality series focuses on women. And it sometimes focuses on primarily female issues, such as childbirth, and female puberty. But so what? I spent many years in high school reading male coming of age stories or mid life crisis regarding manhood and those were never designated ‘man’s fiction’. And i learned from those stories, regardless of the fact that I was born female and identify as a woman. Men and women alike can find something to learn from Jolee, Lyn and Ann. Both men and women can relate to the likes of Adam, Gage, Phillipe and Hunter.
So I’m done personally designating the installments of the Once Upon a Reality series as ‘women’s fiction’. From now on, I will refer to them simply as ‘fiction’ and welcome all kinds of readers to delve into my characters’ lives.
And don’t forget- when you read, leave a review for me on Goodreads or Amazon, or email me or comment on the blog. I love to hear from my readers, no matter who you are or what you have to say!