Where are all the female writers?

There are three specific genres I am passionate about when reading; science-fiction, horror and fantasy. Each of these genres has been very influential in my life and has had a hand in molding my personality and who I am yet when I look back — I don’t recall very many female authors in this genre. The most influential writers of the current times that have made a huge impact on me are Douglas Adams, Clive Barker, Neil Gaiman and Stepehn King. I can only think of one female author who made an impact and that was Kathe Koja and her book Bad Brains. I believe I have read that particular book at least 20 times. However, I have no other female authors in these genres on my bookshelves. Why? Is it because women tend to write in other genres or is it because woman are not as accepted? I don’t know that answer. I’m not one to jump on the “woman are not treated equally” band wagon. In fact, I tend to steer as clear away from that mantra as possible yet I’m perplexed by this phenomenon. Especially since these threee genres are the ones I tend to write stories under.

Speaking of writing. I formulated a new idea while clearing an excel spreadsheet over the last few days. It centers around an entity seeping through the dimensional walls and infecting a playground full of children. Initially thought to be a disease – they are treated at a local hospital only to discover it is something much more sinister and turning the chidren from peaceful happy-go-lucky youths into something much darker and dangerous. I’m fleshing out the storyline. Hopefully I’ll get to work on this soon. I seem to be stuck in a no-go situation with Jason Leeks momentarily so maybe stepping into another world for a bit will stop me from obsessing and the story will start to flow naturally again or at the very least I can relax from trying to move that forward for a bit.

Anywho – thoughts on this whole, woman not being in the top of the three genres I listed (horror, science-fiction or fantasy)? I’d love to hear from others on their opinions of this. I have no definitive opinion; just curiousity.


  1. rosieoliver

    There are several science fiction authors who use a male pen name, including Julian May, Andre Norton and James Tiptree Jr. There are also several authors whose names could be taken as either male or female, including Pat Cardigan. Unfortunately, I still keep hearing of stories where publishers refuse to publish books or stories just because they are female. A good website for female science fiction writers is http://sfmistressworks.wordpress.com/ . Alternatively, if you are desperate, you could, ahem, see my C.A.T. series on Amazon or at TWB Press.

  2. IrishReader

    You make great points! I enjoy horror stories as well, and cannot recall women authors who dominate in that genre (or any that you mentioned). There have been great mystery series by women authors, but not truly “horror” stories in the sense that they would be compared to those authors you mentioned.

    • jamiewriteswhat

      Exactly!! This is what frustrates me. Not a single top ten list in those genres has women except fantasy and they are seriously outnumbered by the men on the list. Is this a true reflection of actual sales and popularity? If so, are women just not as accomplished in those realms of writing. It has me seriously pondering …..

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