Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Women's Fiction Is Not Just About Mature Women

I think it is the time again when I get to spend some time on understanding the idea of women's fiction. I bring this up from time to time, but today's focus is what I am seeing a lot in submissions lately. There seems to be a belief that what moves a story into the women's fiction category is the character and her age.

I have seen a lot of stories where the authors seem to believe their stories are women's fiction simply because it is a woman who is mature (as in age) and is probably leaving a divorce (where of course the husband decided to cheat on her). But, once we get into the story, the entire plot is focused on the building of the relationship and moving the reader to the happily every after. This is, not a women's fiction, but nothing more than a romance with an older woman. The author just decided to throw some baggage in at the beginning of the story to get things going.

We have to remember that in romance, the focus of the story is on the building of the relationship between the two characters. We are watching them go through the early stages of Mark Knapp's relationship model. It really does not matter the age of the character or the reason they are in this situation. It is all about the relationship

When it comes to women's fiction, the focus is on seeing the world through the eyes of the female. To learn what it is to be a woman and to understand how women process through situation and struggles. Yes this information can also be seen in romance, but it is all about the focus. It really doesn't matter if there is a relationship in the story. You have to look at the story arc.

We often also see another variation on this theme, that being if there is a romance in the story, that makes it one. Nope! It is all about the story arc. In a women's fiction novel, the characters may find love and yes, they may have sex in any number of positions possible with as many people as possible, but that is not the them that creates the women's fiction. It is how we watch her process this information and see a transformation in her throughout the novel. When we reach the end, we see a different character, and the events that happened along the way are the things that changed her.

Just a thought for a Tuesday.

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