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I made the mistake of reading yet another pair of articles examining what it means to write a “REAL” Strong Female Character.

I should know better, truly.  Thousands upon thousands of words expended on the issue! Countless examples and counter-examples in an attempt to make it very clear! Comment after comment debating those words and examples!

And in the end, it’s about as helpful as debating what color the walls ought to be painted while the roof is leaking like a sieve.

I’m a busy woman, so I’m going to make this quite simple and brief:

It doesn’t matter if the sharp pointy thing a woman carries is a darning needle, a plow, a pen, a sword, a scalpel, or a brooch. It doesn’t matter if she wears skimpy black leather, frumpy jumpers, billowing gowns, maternity jeans, heavy armor, or a wimple. It doesn’t matter if she sleeps with everyone, concurrently or consecutively, or if she sleeps with no one at all. If she has kids or hates them. If she spends her time nurturing or demanding. If she talks to women or talks to men, or talks about women or talks about men.

It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter.

Here’s what does matter:

A strong character assesses the situation, accepts responsibility, makes decisions, takes on a leadership role, and initiates action. A strong society doesn’t blink when that character happens to be a woman.

Done.

#SFWApro

Comments

( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
elenbarathi
Sep. 22nd, 2015 07:41 pm (UTC)
Word to that; well-said!
blairmacg
Sep. 23rd, 2015 01:35 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
queenoftheskies
Sep. 22nd, 2015 08:23 pm (UTC)
Amen!
blairmacg
Sep. 23rd, 2015 01:35 pm (UTC)
Thank you! :)
sartorias
Sep. 22nd, 2015 09:16 pm (UTC)
Amen to that!
blairmacg
Sep. 23rd, 2015 01:35 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
asakiyume
Sep. 22nd, 2015 11:50 pm (UTC)
I love you.

I want to plaster this everywhere.

I shall commence to do so.
blairmacg
Sep. 23rd, 2015 01:36 pm (UTC)
Hee! Plaster away!

medicmsh
Sep. 23rd, 2015 01:10 am (UTC)
Well said!
blairmacg
Sep. 23rd, 2015 01:37 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
asakiyume
Sep. 23rd, 2015 03:39 am (UTC)
I love you.

I want to plaster this everywhere.

I shall commence to do so.
haikujaguar
Sep. 23rd, 2015 05:40 pm (UTC)
I got through all this and hit a brick wall with the 'leadership role' part. Being a leader is a specific skillset: you can be a strong person without being a leader. In fact, a strong follower/subordinate is worth their weight in gold...and is far less valued in our society.
blairmacg
Sep. 23rd, 2015 08:22 pm (UTC)
That's a valid point, certainly. I see "leadership" as a broadly defined term that includes influence as well as taking charge... but I'd guess that still wouldn't include what you're referring to.

This was brought up on my book blog, too, and it does make me think about my parameters. Would confidence be a better trait, as one commenter suggested? On the other hand, (and this is the hand I claim :) ), is a story stronger for its focus on characters with leadership traits -- even if that character has poor leadership skills?

*ponders more*
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )

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