The feature story I’m working on has a female hero. This is hardly any surprise since I tend to have a woman in the leading role. It is, however, fascinating how hard it is to move away from stereotypic thinking.
My lead has brains. I wanted to move away from the un-social, shy and partly aggressive girl I had in my mind. I found it pretty stereotype. Yet, I ended up in another stereotype: the strong, independent woman. Suddenly I saw Lara Croft. Smart or not, that image of a woman has also become stereotype.
I don’t want her to be overly sexy, but I don’t want her ugly and with glasses. How hard can it be to make her like any everyday woman? There are everyday men on movies. Why aren’t there any fairly decent-looking women in jogging shoes?
And most importantly: Why is it so hard for my brain the create this creature?