Chris Redding lives in New Jersey with her husband, two kids, one dog and three rabbits. She graduated from Penn State with a degree in journalism. When she isn’t writing, she works part time for her local hospital. Her latest release in print is A View to a Kilt. Welcome, Chris!
Thanks, ladies! This is an excerpt from a workshop I do called Show Up Naked: Writing the Male POV. This lecture talks about the basics of men…
Aggression as Part of the Game
In our culture aggression in some form is expected of men, whether in business or on the playing field. Think about a stock broker. He needs to win the game to win for his clients and make money.
Ask to be part of the team you want to be on. Men to do it all the time. They ask for things that women are loathe to do. I used to work a job at night. I’m not a night person. When my boss came to me for a solution to the problems I was having, I asked to work during the day. Problem solved. He saw nothing wrong with me asking for something. It was part of his psyche to ask for what he needed so it made perfect sense that I would ask for what I needed. (Little did he know how much I agonized over the that request.)
Most men lobby for the attention to get on a team.
So men decide what they want and then work towards getting it. Not that women don’t, we just do it differently or wait for it to come to us.
Men make themselves visible. Remember when I talked about how men toot their own horns? How they talk up their own accomplishments? If you aren’t visible, someone else can take credit and they win the game. Not you.
Risks are a part of the game. Men are willing to take them. By acting as if they know how to do it, men get to try something new and sometimes it works out. They win!
I Coulda Been a Contender
Fighting is part of the game. I think as women we are socialized to avoid conflict. Back to that “make everyone happy”. Men have no such socialization and are taught to look out for themselves. I think we’ll see this changing soon.
For men fighting can bring the team together. And being that most men won’t walk away from a fight, it works. Not all men choose to engage in the fight. I know lots of men who can talk their way out of a fight.
And since there are rules to the fight, just as there are rules in any game, each man knows when to quit. Think about a duel. Two people choose their weapons. They walk ten paces, turn and shoot. It couldn’t be more civilized if you discount the killing part.
No one intervenes. It’s between the two men and they both follow the rules.
Ever seen two women fight? There are no rules.
That said, there is nothing wrong to a man if you find your opponent’s weakness and go for it. That is considered fair.
Because they know the rules of the fight, men also know when to stop. They stop fighting when it is clear they won’t win or that the cost of winning is too high. This is ripe for conflict in a novel. Remember this when your hero is fighting for something. This is the quintessential dark moment when he must give up the fight. Most likely in a romance novel, if he wins, he loses the girl. I’m tingling at the thoughts of what you can do with this information. How strong you can make that dark moment.
Thanks for having me today.
Waking up next to a dead guy can ruin your whole day.
When a wise-cracking interior decorator wants to put her past behind her, the dead body of the mayor’s son makes it pretty clear that won’t happen too easily.
A conservative former computer geek for the FBI is holding on too tightly to his past. His wife died under suspicious circumstances and he believes the decorator has the information to solve the case. Unfortunately for him, she isn’t talking… until a series of events convinces her she needs protection especially when her biggest secret threatens to destroy both their lives.
You can buy A View to a Kilt at: