And they thought women were complex creatures… Ha!
After decades of reading an array of novels: thrillers, mystery, suspense, paranormal and yeah, romance, I realized one thing… I hadn’t come across a work of romance where a woman had written in a male’s perspective, in the first person.
Since I’m some kind of masochist—okay, so I love to impose a challenge or two (or a hundred) where my writing is concerned—I took a leap of faith. Thus began my adventure!
Once Written, Twice Shy (OWTS) was inspired by a play on online dating and my love for reading and writing. What I didn’t know, at the time, was that not only would one book be born, but an entire series would follow!
All interconnected, yet vastly different, the men of The Broken Men Chronicles series each have a unique story to tell. From a divorcé, to a widower, a retired militant, even the age-old lost love scenario, and childhood nemeses, these men are scarred in some way yet they persevere. Some battles, both physical and emotional, are tougher than others but they all seek one thing… to come out on top.
I’m no shrink. I’m no guy. I don’t have some kind of degree in male psyche analysis of any kind. And no, I haven’t suffered an electrical shock much like Mel Gibson in What Women Want where I miraculously know what’s going on up there. Now, you’re wondering how in the world does a woman pull it off?
You see, at a certain point in life (nearing my thirties), I came to realize that what men and women want out of life, isn’t all that different: a career, a family or at least someone to call theirs, a home, friends, happiness… need I say more? So, I seized the gauntlet and began to write.
I’m the kind of writer that writes with inhibited emotion. If I can’t feel it, it’s no good. In keeping close with everyday life, I like to mix things up. From the hot and sexy, to the rage, the grief, the turmoil that uncertainty in one’s life can cause, not to mention the humor, my readers are thrust into a world where they can relate. Personally, I love nothing more than a work of fiction where I can picture myself, or someone I know, experiencing or having experienced whatever hurdle, whatever scene I’m reading at the time.
Reading is an escape. It’s a way to detach yourself from your world and immerse yourself into another’s. Should you laugh, feel angered, annoyed, overjoyed, not to mention, thrilled, at any point in a read, then the author’s done their job efficiently.
Some may say that I have feminized my male leads. I disagree. Inspired by people in my life, I wrote characters that have a certain degree of respect toward the opposite sex (yes, even players can have some). In true guy fashion, my men’s dialect can be crass and inappropriate at times as it can be loving and endearing. Same goes for their behavior. I wasn’t looking to write up a slew of Stepford characters. Realistic means with fault and I strive to capture that no matter who the character may be. Of course, writing first person also means that your characters need substance and delving into each of these men’s lives, you’ll quickly come to find out, there is no lack of it. With that said, male readers are able to relate to these characters as much as their female counterparts.
In closing, I have to say that my experience in writing from a male’s perspective has been a humbling one. I’ve loved the self-imposed challenge, not to mention the humorous discussions I’ve had with my male friends and husband while entertaining the task. For those of you reading this, I hope that you enjoyed the insight to my inner writer workings. For those of you who write, I hope you’ll take this as me throwing you a gauntlet and seize the opportunity to challenge yourself in your work.