Writing Info

Women Writing Sci-fi

Oh, the scandal!

I’ve been looking forward to writing this post for a while after I told a neighbor that I wrote a sci-fi novel, and he looked at me like I had three eyes.  He actually said the words…”Seriously, but you’re a woman.  How can you write sci-fi?”

Now, I know he didn’t mean it the way it came out.  He was super-supportive when I told him about Elected.  But his initial reaction showed what he genuinely thought.  He didn’t sugar-coat it because he was too caught off-guard.

The funny thing is that this is not an out of the ordinary response from men about women writing sci-fi.  I’ve heard it at actual science fiction writing conventions.  They say that the women-written books must be “light sci-fi”.  Well, even if my sci-fi writing is light, who the heck cares?  Maybe more people will get into the genre if it’s not so strictly gadgety and techy?

And who’s to say that my sci-fi isn’t all geeked-out, rooted in the very core of technological innovation?   Why assume that I’m writing light sci-fi?  When I included futuristic objects in Elected, I researched technology that was on the cusp of creation.  In fact, in the second Elected Series novel, Suspected, I focus quite a bit on optogenetics, a mind-controlling technique that’s currently in the research stages in many labs across the world.

Also, what the heck, men…do you think you’re the only ones who watch Star Trek Generations with your dad?  Or who know that Alf likes to eat cats?  Or who secretly admire George R.R. Martin for the way he can make his characters’ sex scenes so creepily steamy?  No!  There are plenty of women out there who have fallen in love with the science fiction genre.  And if we watch it/read it/play it out at uber-popular conventions like comic con, who’s to say we can’t write the stuff?


My YA publisher, Silence in the Library Publishing just released a sci-fi anthology of stories, Athena’s Daughters, with women as the main characters.  And all the short story authors are women too.  I think that’s cool.  It’s true that women aren’t as represented in the genre, either as writers or as the heroes.  I think that’s one of the main reasons girls gravitated with such fervor to the Hunger Games and Divergent.  So I love to see more sci-fi books written by women.  I think women authors (not always, but sometimes) have a knack for mixing the futuristic world-building of sci-fi with romance in such a way that it draws people into the emotion of the characters.

And as always, ELECTED can be purchased through Amazon or Barnes & Noble, just by typing in the title on their websites.  It’s in ebook form now, but in a month or two, it’ll be for sale on those sites in paperback as well.  And the kickstarter paperback and hardcovers will be shipping in August!

And do tell…what canned response would you like to have given someone who looked at you strangely after you told them what you wrote?

1 Comment on Women Writing Sci-fi

  • Stephanie says:
    July 26, 2014 at 11:58 am

    I would politely tell them that while they might consider what I wrote to be odd, I didn’t specifically write it to appease them. I love your reference to Star Trek Next Generation. I have probably seen every episode and still sit down and watch it every time I can catch it on lol


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