I actually haven’t read Danse Macabre, although I bought it recently and am really excited to get into it. Stephen King has written some of the best and worse, most complex and most disposable female characters I’ve ever read. I always remember his women. There’s always this play between throwback mom-trauma and masculinist Lib womanhood (has anyone actually read Rose Madder? Uh, yeah. To talk waves here, my mom loves that book). But he’s never afraid to try to develop a woman. And when he writes shallowly, he always admits to as much in the notes to the reprints. To be willing to admit when you are wrong—about your science fiction conceptions, about your wooden writing style, about your poorly developed female characters—a good writer makes. But it takes the same level of humility to be willing to try to write women characters when you, whatever, feel like you can’t “relate” to their experiences. To be willing to write a female character because you know that female character is worth writing, even though your training is only in writing about The Male Experience, is brave. Why? Because when you fuck up, you have to admit you need to work on your writing. If you’re every other male ever, you just blame the Female Experience for your flaws. It’s brave to try to write a woman and fail and then be willing to try again, be willing to admit that it’s not because women are undeserving of representation that your Heroine was a terrible Heroine. It’s because you can’t write her. Stephen King always writes and always admits when he did it wrong. And he tries again. He doesn’t try to pretend that the flaws in his female characters were because Men somehow just Can’t Ever Write A Female Character Obviously. Stephen King is one of few authors from whom I might accept the “I write what I know” argument, considering that he practically always writes terrified writer males. Almost autobiography.
All I’m saying is that the ability to reflect on the representation in your literature, or your films, is the best quality I could ask for. And the fact that very few people have this humility? Especially very few men? Is why I hate every movie and every book in the world.
Except for Stephen King’s. Although, my love for Carrie is pretty much straightforwardly about my obsession with periods. (via rgr-pop)