Readers, give a warm welcome to the fabulous Summer Heacock! She’s here to chat with us about women’s fiction and stories intended for the ladies. She has a lot of wonderful things to say, so sit up and pay attention! Or at least, you know, lean closer to your monitor.
Hello, Summer, and welcome! For those of you who don’t know, Summer has a GIF-tastic and hilarious blog, so it’s super-cool to have her here at my humble blog-bode.
Why, thank you for having me! Please picture me curtsying right now.
Tell us a little about yourself and your work.
Erm. Well. I am a very strange little creature who Tweets spastically, blogs when the blogs beg to be written, and writes manuscripts so that my brain doesn’t explode. Story pressure is serious business.
What made you decide to write women’s fiction?
I write it because I read it. I know it best, I suppose. When stories come falling into my head, they tend to almost always be something along the WF lines. I have other stories I like to toy with, but WF is just sort of my sweet spot. My mind is just sort of engineered to write it easier than other genres. Or, something…
What types of stories does women’s fiction make possible?
Anything! Okay, that isn’t true. If aliens popped into your rom-com, that’d change it out of WF, so I suppose there are some constraints.
Honestly, I’m not sure what stories can and can’t be done. Is that bad? It’s probably bad that I can’t clarify…
I’d say if you write your story and you read it back and it feels like WF is the label for it, then that’s what it is. I try not to get too crazy about labels before I start writing, otherwise I’ll go mad trying to make it fit into what it “should” be.
Aside from the obvious, what audience do you think women’s fic attracts? How does that alter the types of stories you tell and characters you write?
I think while WF is obviously geared toward the ladies, I genuinely believe it’s for anyone. We do have the slight disadvantage in the way that some people wouldn’t go see a Sandra Bullock film to avoid the “chick-flick” stereotype, but really, in the end, a good story is a good story. I’d hate to see someone miss out on a book they’d truly love just because of a genre label.
How does a gal-centric genre affect the stakes for your characters and your audience?
While I really do try to not consider the end-game like that when I am writing out a story, I will fully admit that when I toy with the idea of an unhappy ending, or something out of the norm, I do pause for a minute and think, “Wait…Is this riot-worthy?”
But, I read WF, so when I’m writing, I try to think of what I’d like to read. The only way I’m letting anyone see something I’ve written is if I’m sure it’s something I’d want to read myself.
Why do you think people love to read women’s fiction? How do you think the genre affects its audience?
WF is great because it’s identifiable. It’s easy to see yourself in the shoes of the characters. Or see someone that you’d like to be and imagine yourself in their shoes. It’s a great genre to dive into to walk away with feels pouring out of you.
I know it’s not literarily correct anymore, but I am a huge fan of the chick-lit that is now housed under WF. I love chick-lit, man. Love it. You’re not going to turn pages and change your whole life, but damn it, there is no better way to spend a rainy Sunday or a day reading on the beach than with some romance, hilarity, and general merriment dancing across the book in your hand.
Sometimes, you just need to step inside something fluffy to keep the real world at bay, and chick-lit is a solid delivery for that.
For fun, what is your favorite genre to read? Why?
If I’m looking for something to take me out of my day for whatever reason, I will head for chick-lit or WF. It’s my happy place. If a book can make me swoon or make me laugh, I’m all over it. But I will read just about anything for any reason. I’m not the biggest sci-fi gal, but I’ve read some good ones over the last year that are bringing me around.
Where can readers track you down?
Twitter – @Fizzygrrl
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/summerheacock