1. nhope
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    nhope Contributing Member Reviewer

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    A theme focusing on women today?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by nhope, Jul 18, 2009.

    If you were going to write a story that focused on the lives of women today, what would you write about? Would you keep it general or specific?
     
  2. Northern Phil
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    Northern Phil Active Member

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    I would make it specific to that charecter. There's to much diversity to keep it as a general topic.
     
  3. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    yeah, it's too diverse. It's better to focus on individuals than general women's issues. Think of a story that would mean something to you.
     
  4. RomanticRose
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    RomanticRose Active Member

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    I think you'll have to get more specific. "The lives of women today" covers everything from Hillary Clinton to the Octo-mom and millions of points in between.
     
  5. marina
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    marina Contributing Member Contributor

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    What would YOU write about? Why would YOU choose that theme? I don't get what this question is about--is it a homework assignment or what? You should pose a question by giving some kind of explanation on why you're asking it or your own opinion, and then asking for others opinions as well.
     
  6. ManhattanMss
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    ManhattanMss Contributing Member

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    "The lives of women today" is way too broad a focus for me. In fact, I can't honestly imagine how "women today" could even be a focus at all for an interesting piece of fiction (feel free to prove me wrong). I mean, maybe a human interest piece for a women's magazine. But not for the fiction I like to read and try to write, myself.

    Specificity is crucial to the stories I write (and to those I enjoy reading the most), and the aim of those stories is to connect on some thematic level with human qualities I imagine my readers posess. But I've never written a story where I imagined an audience made up entirely of women, nor one that focused on delivering some woman-related message.

    I'm not saying there's anything wrong with doing any of that (I guess chic lit and romance might be genres that would appeal to women more than to men--but I don't write for those markets, and I don't often read them, either). I did read a romance novel a couple of years ago by an author I happened to know, and I thought it was very well written. I suspected, though, that she could write better and that the story had been carefully pruned and shaped for commercial success. But it was very specific to a particular contemporary woman and her circumstances. I didn't think of it as reflecting "women today," and it certainly didn't reflect me or my interests--nor even my fantasies, for that matter.

    I wonder why do you ask? What do you have up your sleeve?
     
  7. Schreiberling
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    Schreiberling New Member

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    Keep it general when there are 30000000 female humans living on earth.. :confused:

    You could also ask
    If you were going to write a story that focused on the lives of men today, what would you write about? Would you keep it general or specific?



    If you want to write something about a woman, then please find something original and interesting.
     
  8. nhope
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    nhope Contributing Member Reviewer

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    I know it's vague and general which is why I'm asking. :rolleyes:

    It's for a contest and they simply say to submit a short story, 3500 words or less, on a theme that focuses on the lives of women today. What would women possibly want to read about that fits this category? Career? Motherhood? Relationships? Should it be dramatic, humorous, candid?

    I was interested because the top prize is $3,000. and possible publication in the magazine, 2 runners-up $750.00 each.
     
  9. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    Don't lump all women into a group. There is no one thing that interests women. We all have our own interests. Again, I ask you, what is something that women face today that is meaningful to YOU?
     
  10. ManhattanMss
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    ManhattanMss Contributing Member

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    Good prize! It's worth attacking, isn't it? I'd go for specific. Nobody wants to read a short story (if it's fiction) that's so general it isn't compelling. Focus on something that's specific or familiar to you, and create an imaginative story around that. Good luck:D!
     
  11. jwatson
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    jwatson Active Member

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    My law teacher gave us a long lecture about some bad European slave people who pretty much sell women to buyers and stuff like that...I wish I had paid attention...
    But...hmm. i would do it on something like that, it could get really interesting, doesn't sound like a bad idea for me in the future :p
    watch Taken :)
     
  12. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    that's way too narrow, too!... it only covers women in the us... there are women all over the world, from the countless 'women' of all ages enslaved as sex workers, to 13 presidents and prime ministers... from 10 self-made billionaires, to the hundreds of thousands who risk being raped and killed just for daring to go miles for a jug of water, to keep their children alive...
     
  13. nhope
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    nhope Contributing Member Reviewer

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    Good thoughts everyone.

    I was thinking of comparing women of the 19th and 21st centuries, with respect to "some things don't change." For example, women writers were more apt to be published if they used initials or a male name, and JK Rowling - and I'm sure others - have done the same. Years ago, women were supposed to stay home with the kids and take care of things and now, it's a double-edge - cursed if you do and cursed if you don't.

    The theme doesn't ask for a comparison but if the comparison reflects that progress doesn't necessarily progress, it may be food for thought.
     
  14. marina
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    marina Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think it's way too broad still. You could write about male & female readers, and the bias by males towards male writers. I think you could do a whole paper on that. Or a paper on women staying home & taking care of their children, and how many are now employed but still are primarily responsible for taking care of the children. I don't know if this is a social science class, but if it is, you'd want hard data to back up your argument--research findings, surveys, employment data, etc.
     
  15. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    I would say ask Maia

    The reason being: she's active in writing philosophy and other writings on women's issues. Maybe she could give you some ideas...
     
  16. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    Isn't it a crying shame, Mom, that women have to suffer like that? The possiblity of being raped or killed just trying to keep your family alive...it's enough to turn one's stomach when you think about it...

    Wouldn't it be nice if the world wasn't like that?
     
  17. Seppuku
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    Whilst there are somethings that don't change, a lot has changed when you think about it. It might not have done in certain sections of society. Why JK Rowling has used initials is not necessarily to hide her gender, but probably for the same reason CS Lewis did it and he was a guy. ;) I don't think there's a preference in gender for writers when somebody picks out a book, I am sure anybody who's that sexist are a small minority. There are quite a few women writers out there. When I look on the shelf for new books to read I see quite a number of them written by women writers, some of the greatest contemporary writers are women.

    If you want gender-issues of women today, you might want to write a story about women who are trapped in one part of society - whilst society has progressed a lot, there are places where women are oppressed, the sex and porn industry might be somewhere to look, though that is perhaps the common example, but you still get 14 year old girls (and even younger) in the sex industry - 2 years ago I read a local newspaper article about the authorities shutting down a brothel in our town which had 13/14 year old girls in them.

    You might find women at the bottom of society who are mistreated by their husbands, if you live in the UK, you might see some of them on the Jeremy Kyle show, I remember one story on there about a violent relationship where the guy punched his pregnant wife and caused her to miscarriage - you might want to focus on the low-life dominance, where the wife victimised and bullied.

    You might want to try other cultures, what is the issue of Muslim women wearing the Burkha - this one will need research because you won't want to misrepresent the facts and offend somebody. France I believe banned the Bhurka (or tried, I can't remember which) because they saw it as being a sexism issue. Does a woman where a Bhurka because she chooses to or being they're required to? What happens if they refuse?

    You might go as far as African cultures where you have women fighting everyday to support their families so that they may live - walking miles just to get water...though the men work hard too, but you might only be interested on the woman's side of the story for the competition. In some third world places it is dangerous to be a woman.

    I remember reading a news article not so long ago where in a middle eastern country and woman was raped, but because she was in the same car as the man, she was seen as 'being' unfaithful, she was punished by being stoned. Sorry that I don't have link, it might not be hard to find research on women abused in certain Middle Eastern countries.



    Those are some thoughts if you want to go on the whole 'oppression' theme, you might not want to be so depressing and focus on the societies and part of society where woman's right have progressed and how a woman is able to do more than they used to.
     
  18. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    yes, ck, i do study and write about the history and current state of women in all parts of the world, so will be happy to hear from anyone who wants to know what went on here or there with women, at any time in human history...

    and yes, it is a crying shame!.. and it does turn my stomach [and torture my heart], whenever i see it in the news... and when i think about it, which is just about every day of my life...

    and yes, it would be nice, if the world wasn't like that... but it is... and it won't change, because enough humans won't change enough to stop doing those things and letting it all be done... sad and maddening, but true...
     

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