nanowrimo is still happening around these parts. i'm almost halfway to the 50,000 word mark. i'm feeling good but my brain is tired. every single day i write, i spend a lot of time thinking about the character i'm writing and the responibilty that comes with that. it feels really self important to say that but its true. i do have a responsibility. my main character is based loosely on a friend, one of my very favorite people in the world. i don't want to make her look bad. so, there's that. but then also, i'm writing a young adult novel. i want to write a girl that i would have wanted to read. i want to write a girl character i'm proud of even if its only my friends and family that read this book when i'm done.
here's a few things i've been thinking about:
this speech that joss whedon gave. i've watched it many times over the years but i've watched it four times since i started writing on november 1. i just watched it again before i wrote this. i've realized that if having strong women, actual women, is secondary to the story someone wants to tell then its easier to fall back on cliches and tired tropes. writing strong girls and woman is hard work. sometimes hearing joss whedon say, "why aren't you asking a hundred other guys why they aren't writing strong women characters?" is the kick in the pants i need to do the work.
a friend and i just finished watching the series ringer together. we had fun but the women, oy the women. they are all sort of horrible. today, that friend said she missed buffy. there have been kick ass girls and women on tv since but there's nothing quite like buffy, with its many strong women and the men who respect them. now, don't get me wrong. i don't think i'm writing buffy, veronica mars or even katniss but god, do i wish there had been more of them when i was growing up.
this piece from the new york times. after reading it, i realized something. i have never described my main character beyond her height and the fact that she has hair that she sometimes wears in braids. is that actually important if she's a fully formed (and kind of awesome) character in every other way?
so, what do you think? who are your favorite kick ass girls on tv, in books and movies? and does a character's physical description really matter? i'm serious. i want to know.