Tom Schreck, author of the Duffy Mysteries
Novels are full of cliches—it's the place where lazy writers go. In our genre women characters seldom get the full range of development. Sometimes it's the protag and sometimes it is other characters.Here's my take on the top 10 female cliches in the mystery genre.
1. Men can be hard guy PI's and be drunks or recovering drunks but, just like in society, women aren't allowed. Women can be PI's but they aren't allowed to drink too much and definitely not allowed to be addicted.
2. Attractive women are manipulative and not to be trusted.
3. They are also either sluts or totally out of reach sexually.
4. All are obsessed with shoes and fashion
5. They love to get together with friends—usually three others—and eat at a fern bar type restaurant.
6. They are fixated on their dads.
7. Their relationships are never happy and its either because the men they date are assholes or because the woman just can't give of herself fully.
8. Female PIs don't have children.
9. They can beat men up.
10. They have male authority figures in their lives who are totally unreasonable.
Once again, to me, cliches just mean lazy and unimaginative writing. Why not make every person a unique individual, like, you know, life?
Any to add or subtract?