Friday, October 12, 2012

Writing the Male Point of View

I rediscovered this article today (the original is from Writer's Digest and can be found here). These are some great tips for females struggling to write realistic male characters (and it wouldn't hurt you males to read it either. ;) Enjoy!

Writing the Male Point of View by Lynn Rush (September 13, 2011)

I’ve got a release coming out in September called Wasteland. It’s written in first person, male point of view.
You might be thinking, But you’re a chick, how can you write male point of view? I guess we’ll find out if you think I can write the male point of view effectively after my book releases, won’t we? ☺

But seriously, I didn’t go into it blindly. The key is research. That can come from daily living, reading, internet, people watching, etc. For me, it came from all of those and more.

I have a Master’s Degree in mental health therapy, and while I’m no longer using it in a clinical setting, what I learned through six years of school comes in handy when writing characters. I’ve taken classes on how to understand men—specifically marital classes, too. I love the concept of men looking through blue glasses whereas girls look through pink glasses. (Love and Respect)

But how do you write that? Here are a few things I kept in mind while writing Wasteland:

– I’ve read stats that women say 20,000 words per day compared to men speaking only 7,000 per day. Just because they’re not talking out loud, doesn’t mean things are silent inside. So, there’s a bit more introspection with male leads. Though, you need to make sure it comes in short bursts, but that’s a whole ‘nother post.

– Men are more sight driven. Yep, what they see sticks in their minds. So, when writing a male POV, you’re going to be seeing a lot more. Come on, though, there are still feelings and thoughts going on, too, but most are stimulated by the sight of something.

– Details are not a male’s best friend. For the most part, men are not detail oriented. They tend to think big picture. That’s important to keep in mind when writing a male character. They aren’t going to detail how many inches above the girl’s knees her skirt is or what brand it is, only that he sees miles of sexy, long legs. It can help create some interesting situations, right?

– If you’re a female reading this, has there ever been a time when you were sharing a heartache or hardship with the male in your life, and he just wanted to fix it when all you wanted was a hug and to be told how special you are? Instead he started giving suggestions on how to remedy the situation … Did that just bug you to no end? Well, that’s part of how men tick. They’re more logically driven. Want to fix things.

– Then there’s the whole sex thing—You know I had to bring it up since I write romance novels, right? *grin* Men connect more with physical touch whereas woman connect better emotionally. That opens the door to a plethora of interesting situations throughout a story.

I could go on, but those are a few things to keep in mind when writing a male character. 

What suggestions do you have that might help write a stronger, more accurate male character?

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