Dear Reader Who Writes,
It is I, Moonbeam Farquhar Metheringham IV, here to induct you into the greater mysteries of the literary art. I am, of course, already well known to you as the much-feted author of “Fatswhistle and Buchtooth”, which one kind reviewer once described as ‘unique’ and ‘unforgettable’ although much of the rest of the review is unrepeatable in polite company.
Mumsie made an interesting point over breakfast the other day. She had just put two more tablespoons of sugar over her frosted-flakes and added a generous dose of Tia Maria to her morning cup of coffee. I had been reading the paper and tutting over all those dreadful unwashing poor people who keep complaining about how unfair things are, when she said: “Don’t you think it’s really odd, Moons, that men get called heroes?”
Being polite I shook the paper vigorously to indicate I was reading, but Mummy was not to be dissuaded: “It’s odd cos Hero was a woman, right? In the myth – she was the heroic one who tried to save that Leander. So why are men called ‘heroes’?”
Knowing I would not be left in peace until I had proffered a contribution, I sighed and reluctantly peered at her over the table. “So why?” I asked.
“No idea. It’s just fucking odd. Maybe it’s a possessive ‘s’ in Hero’s?”
Needless to say, I made good my escape back to my writing cubby in the refurbished coal cellar just as soon as I had crunched my last mouthful of toast and marmalade.
I have to admit to not being so well acquainted with the female of the species. My education took place in the monastic gender-solitude of a school which snapped at the heels of Eton, Westminster and Rugby – and we usually had our faces trodden on by their students on the rare occasions our teams met on sports-fields too. So my main window into the wonderful world of womanhood has always been my beloved Mumsie and the women in books, TV shows, films – and some special magazines and websites which I study purely for research purposes.
Which is why today’s lesson for you my devoted disciples of the pen, is intended for those who, like me, are biologically unable to understand the mysterious feminine. It will give you much-needed guidance on how to write these other gendered humans as realistically as you write your men.
How To Write A Book – Lesson 19: The Write Way to Write Women
The first thing to remember, dear Male Reader Who Writes (MRWW), is that women are not the same as men in any but the most basic respects. Yes, like us they will acknowledge the lower levels of Maslow’s Triangle, but once away from the necessities of existence such as food and shelter, the feminine operates upon an entirely alternative agenda to the masculine.
To be brief and blunt – you will never understand women, they are a psychologically alien species. So don’t even try. Make your heroines the epitome of your self-conceived notions of femininity and you will not go too far wrong.
The recent trend to have a ‘strong, female, protagonist’ does, however, need to be addressed. This is very simple to achieve.
Rule One: She must be devastatingly beautiful.
Rule Two: She must be able to physically beat up men.
Rule Three: She must be rude to everyone – but especially to men.
Rule Four: She must be selfish and ambitious and not care who she hurts to get her way.
Rule Five: She must do a job that is male-dominated and do it well.
Rule Six: She must have no feminine attributes except large breasts and high-heels.
Rule Seven: She is probably a Lesbian.
And with that, amigos, I bid you adieu.