Tuesday, May 3, 2011

What is Women's Fiction?

photo from salon.com
I once posted this: Women's fiction is that which is written with female readers in mind. It's about the protagonist's journey through a story, about her growth, and her [experience].
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This is what I tell people, too, when they ask what I write, but I've been finding that, for some, this explanation of the wide-spanning category isn't enough. They want it broken down further.
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Wikipedia defines women's fiction as an umbrella term for a wide-ranging collection of literary sub-genres that are marketed to female readers, including many mainstream novels, romantic fiction, "chick lit," and other sub genres.
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Better. Clearer. I'll have to remember this.
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Whether you write it or read it, how would you describe to others what, exactly, women's fiction is? What types of books does the term include for you?

8 comments:

khushi said...

A narrative born out of a woman's imagination, penned by a woman.Fiction by a woman, about a woman/women, for women, but not restricted to them.It is representative of a woman in all dimensions, aspects and tones..Black, white and greys...blues, pinks, lavender, burgundy..........

Janna Qualman said...

Great answer, Joy!

Lynn said...

I like Khushi's answer. Wally Lamb's She's Come Undone has a female protagonist. When reading I was surprised by his insight into how women think! So women's fiction is not restricted to female authors, and vice versa.

septembermom said...

khushi's answer says so much. a woman in all dimensions, aspects and tones...wonderfully stated.

Jennifer Shirk said...

Yeah, I've heard that chick-lit is now being called women's fiction--or at least under that umbrella.
I would say that's about right. But I would define it like you. I always felt the MC should be on some sort of journey or character growth.

Jewel Allen said...

I'm still trying to figure this out myself! I just know that most of the books I love to read are considered women's fiction. They usually provoke a strong emotion in me, where I recognize my own struggles in the MC's. There - a stab at the definition!

PS Love your new layout by the way, and your photo is gorgeous!

the domestic fringe said...

A chick flick in print?

P.S. Today is Fiction Friday. Hope you'll join us!
http://thedomesticfringe.com/2011/05/06/fiction-friday-1-the-beginning/
-FringeGirl

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