A new member joined my critique group this month and one of the first things he said to me was, “I thought you were a guy.” Meaning from what he read in my submission before meeting me face to face, he thought I was male. I admit, my name Nu Yang doesn’t actually tell you if I’m male and female, and often, I get called “he” from people  I correspond with in work emails.

Maybe it is my writing. I’ve done those online tests where they analyze a blog post and it tells you if you have masculine or feminine writing—I usually get masculine. I can see that based on my writing style. Usually sparse, short sentences. I think I can get from my journalist side.

But going back to my new critique partner, he thought I was a guy based on my story’s material. Right now, the group is reading my screenplay, which I finished over Memorial Weekend. The working title is “Regular Joe,” about a regular guy named Joe (of course) who gets caught up with a mobster’s daughter who has run away after stealing a lot of money from her dad. There are strippers, guns, fun stuff, you know. So, based on that, he thought I was a guy.

I guess my question is, does it matter if I’m a girl and I’m writing about mobsters and strippers? If Nicholas Sparks (a guy) can write sappy romance novels, can’t I write about a guy who sleeps around, smokes, swears, and yeah, maybe he does find love. I am a girl after all 🙂

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