Men. They are half of the population. Many of us are married to them. Several of us have dads, sons, brothers, or nephews.
Yet, for the female writer, it can be challenging to write from the male point of view. Actually, It can be downright terrifying.
The editorial team discussed this common concern, and Cam thoughtfully stated,
I would say the trick to writing the male POV is to listen, really listen, to the different men around you—how they talk, and what they say (and what they don’t say).
In addition to putting on your listening ears, Mandy and Cheryl suggested reading books written for men by men. Take note of what the characters discuss, as well as the cadence of the sentences. If you need suggestions, look to Chuck Palahniuk, Tom Robbins, or Jon Krakauer.
Consider writing from the opposite gender–I bet you will enjoy the challenge. And maybe–just maybe–it will help you appreciate the men in your life a bit more.
With that in mind, here are few tips to consider when getting in the male mind:
1. Be direct. Men tend to say what they mean and mean what they say. Instead of saying, “Do you guys feel like getting Indian food?” many men would more likely say, “Let’s get Indian.”
2. Notice what men notice. If a woman comes down the stairs wearing a lavender silk wrap dress with a sequenced clutch and peep-toe Jimmy Choos, he’s going to note that she “looks hot in the purple dress.”
Unless he works in the fashion industry, he won’t notice the rest.
3. Use short phrases and real language. Let the words around the words convey the emotion. If you want a great example of this, watch this clip from Good Will Hunting.
WARNING: BAD LANGUAGE. CLICK AT YOUR OWN RISK.
We’re interested in your thoughts. Next Wednesday, Lance will turn the tables and talk about how he writes the female point-of-view.
Please, in the comments, join the discussion. How do you write men?