Tuesday, May 23, 2006


I hate generalizations. If someone makes a sweeping generalization with no qualifiers, I find myself arguing the opposing view, no matter how valid the generalization may be as a whole.

So tonight I was reading an article by Jacqui Wilson about "Tough Chicks: Heroines in Today's Market." It's an article that interested me more than a little, as I write tough chicks. And it was very well done.

But there was a "however" in there that bugged me. It talked about responsibility to not portray a heroine unrealistically, i.e. doing things that can't really be done. Because apparently, if I watch Sydney Bristow it will make me think I can do a tornado kick to the head.


First, I resent the implication that I, or any of my readers, is stupid enough to read some action in a book and decide that even though I'm nothing like that heroine, I can do the same things without the training or specialized circumstances or, hey, the fictional world in which she's portrayed.

Secondly, I resent the implication that no man watching Tom Cruise dangle out of a speeding car would think he could do the same thing, but a woman watching Lara Croft rappel upside down from the top of a cliff would think "oh, hey, let's go do that on Saturday."

An author has a lot of responsibility to her reader. Thinking for her isn't one of them.

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