Men and Fiction

Recommendations, discussions, and odes to your favorites
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Joined: February 5th, 2010, 6:30 pm

Re: Men and Fiction

Post by superdarklayers » February 6th, 2010, 9:43 pm

I checked the top sellers, and the data was not overwhelmingly female.

On the 2009 USA Today list of best sellers, there were 20 women and 15 men with at least one work of fiction.

On the 2008 USA Today list of best sellers over the year, there were 19 men and 16 women with one or more works of fiction.

On last week's New York Time Bestseller list, there were 18 men with at least work of fiction, compared to 16 women (hardcovers). On the trade paperbacks, there were 15 women and 14 men with at least one on the list.

Nielsen's data converages with these measurements ... ings/books
4 males, 5 females

Also, Nielsen's top 10 lists of 2009 and 2008 are not overwhelmingly female ... n-2009jpg/ ... n-2008.jpg

4-6 guys among the top 10 sellers both years.

Now, if you look at last week's USA Today list with 150 books, there are 71 fiction books by women, compared to 36 by men. But, in the top 30, 14 were fiction books by women compared to 13 by men. In the 31-150 top sellers, there were 50 books by women compared to 23 by men. There may be more women writers, but among the absolute best-sellers it's much more matched. Consider, though, that is where the vast majority of books are sold. A 1994 study found that over 65% of all fiction sold came from FIVE AUTHORS. Maybe things have changed dramatically, but experts are skeptical. ... 01730.html

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Re: Men and Fiction

Post by sandiegoart » February 6th, 2010, 10:58 pm

I am a dude and a I love fiction... I think Cormac McCarthy sucks, what a whiner, and Chuck Palacouldyouhaveaspellablelastname sucks, what a whiner too... give me something to sing about, already, as Buffy would say. So I don't have to keep rereading Diana Wynne Jones and wishing someone in publishing/writing had a brain.

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Re: Men and Fiction

Post by wilhem spihntingle » February 8th, 2010, 11:09 am

casnow wrote:There was an interesting article in the NY Times now about how male writers these days seem to have had their testicles removed - most literacists prefer cuddling to sex, and that they don't have the edge that a young Norman Mailer, Philip Roth, or John Updike had. They're protagonists are the type of guys whose shoulders you cry on. In other words, they're wimps.

I'm going to stereotype but here's what men like:
Men like to do things - we like action, whether it be drinking, fighting, screwing, driving, blowing things up, shooting things, competing, cooking meat, and winning
When men read we want to read about drinking, fighting, screwing, driving, blowing things up, shooting things, competing, cooking meat and winning

we want to read about someone losing, but in the end the hero has to get drunk, then drive to where the bad guy is, shoot all his accomplices, blow up his house, car, etc, then fight him to the death... after winning he'll probably even screw the guy's wife before cooking some meat over the burning remnants of the bad guy's home - hence he will then win.

However, b/c most men like the above, we generally write about the above, which is for adults and not for kids - hence there just isn't much for little boys to read. So they go out in the woods with their Red Rider BB guns and shoot things, throw homemade pipebombs into the local fishing pond, and dream about the one day they'll get brave enough to talk to girls.

reading generally is second to all that.
Amen to that brother. At this point, if I'm looking for some manfiction, S.K's list of his annual top 10 is a great place to start. Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter is not for me, but Lord of the Flies is. There's not much out there (besides word of mouth) for the Leonard, King, Cussler, Ellis lovin' male readers, who also love Tarantino and Ritchie style of movies. "Ravens", "This Wicked World", and "The Ghosts of Belfast" were great reads of 2009, and hopefully, there is more to come in 2010. I like baddass villians, double crosses, profanity and violence, and usually female characters take a backseat in the story ( in my reading, not in rmy reality) Reading is escapism,and I think a lot of "manly men" like fast moving stories (300 pages) that can be read in two or three days tops. It's all about the entertainment factor, not the emotional factor.

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Joined: February 10th, 2010, 9:28 am

Re: Men and Fiction

Post by woodge » February 10th, 2010, 9:43 am

I'm a guy and have been an avid reader since I was 9. My brother was more of a typical play-all-sports/books-are-boring kind of guy but then I tossed some funny books and spy-thrillers his way and he started asking me for more suggestions. He's a reader now. The action stuff is what initially hooks guys, I think. And of course many of us stick within certain genres. But there are many who branch out. Although I've read over a dozen each by Elmore Leonard, Michael Crichton, Stephen King, Robert Ludlum... I've also branched out and read some books you might consider perfect fodder for a women's bookclub (The Time Traveler's Wife for example). Currently I'm back to my teenage roots where I'm obsessed with fantasy epics. But I stray into thrillers and general fiction too. And once I passed my 30s I started reading a lot more non-fiction as well in subjects ranging from history, religion, science, travel, mathematics and so forth. I like to mix it up and am constantly browsing bookstores both real and virtual.

I'm always amazed to learn that someone reads less than 4 books a year. I don't understand that. I always have a book going and go through on average 36 books per year. And I still play sports and now have 2 small kids. And by the way, I read to my kids nearly every day. And I tell them make-up stories nearly every night. They bitch and moan if they don't get their make-up stories. I think many readers grew up around reading parents.

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Re: Men and Fiction

Post by keremmermutlu » March 16th, 2010, 8:46 am

hi there,
actually i think there are alot of really good men writers. My favourites being Cormac McCathey (the Road was simply amazing), Ian McEwan, Douglas Coupland,Oliver Jeffers, Bret Easton Ellis-and all of these guys are modern well read writers. And they can write a good sentence or two.
btw-i really like these forums, they're really great.
thanks, kerem.

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Re: Men and Fiction

Post by mmcdonald64 » March 16th, 2010, 2:24 pm

I grew up in a family where both my parents were avid readers, however, it was my dad that I actually *saw* reading the most. My mom didn't get a chance to read books until the end of the night, when she was in bed.(I didn't figure that out until later, when I became a mom.)

My grandfather also loved to read. In fact, he's probably the one that fostered a love of reading in me because he always had so many books on his shelves. I'm one of eight kids, four boys, four girls, and all of us girls love to read, but only one of the boys.

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Re: Men and Fiction

Post by shadow » March 29th, 2010, 12:56 am

Well thank god I have a male protagonist that girls and guys can like because you guys are picky! I know my book won't market to anyone Romance, Chick-lit or womens but I think that it really depends on everones personality. I mean you can't really say all girls like chick-lit (which I don't) and all guys like thrillers and Sci-Fi cause I like that too. I mean it all depends on the person. We are all different and our differences make such a large pool of diverse readers.
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