What's cooking? Nothing because we're heading up to Yakima again for the Girls' Basketball 2A State Finals. Go Mustangs! So, it's fast food tonight.
I bet that title got your attention.
I don't want to generalize. There are obviously thousands of female authors who write very, very well. And there are men out there who write very, very badly. Some of the purplest prose I've ever read in my life came out of a guy.
But I got to thinking about this the other day while I was reading Gary Paulsen's The Beet Fields. It was one of those books I read in a state of awe.
Don't get me wrong. I hated the ending. I thought it was incredibly cliche and not anything I'd ever want my son reading when he's a teenager. The YUCK factor was too strong for me personally.
BUT, Gary Paulsen is an amazing writer. I was in awe of his writing. How he could show so much in a few words. He didn't have to lead us through his protagonist's emotions. We knew exactly how the mc was feeling without Paulsen ever having to give a word of explanation. Because of that, the man's a genius as far as I'm concerned.
I felt the same way when I was reading Matt de la Pena's Mexican WhiteBoy. Paulsen's writing made me think of de la Pena's, even though they write in markedly different styles. It was their brevity that awed me.
And I guess because they are both male authors, I began to wonder, is it a guy thing?
I'm reading Cythia Voigt's Homecoming right now. I like it. It's good writing, but I'm not in awe.
So, I keep wondering. Is truly succinct writing (think Hemingway) something that mostly men achieve?
Can you think of female writers you've read who have been known for their few, but powerful, words?
Do women tend to use more words than men? And why is that? What's your experience?