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10 July 2002 @ 02:24 pm

I was reading books - and saw this post. And I'm boggling. It has never occured to me to choose my fiction by the size of the heroine. It'd be like picking my friends based on their physique ("I'm a real-size woman, I can't be friends with you because you're too thin") and ignoring everything else.


Maybe it's the sort of fiction I read - primarily fantasy/sci-fi/horror with some mystery and a few mainstream novels ... no chick lit for me.

Do any of you actively look for books with heroines/heros that are the same size as you (regardless of what size you are)?
Current Mood: Boggling
Andrewsagima on July 10th, 2002 06:41 am (UTC)
Never crossed my mind
8bit plastic love machine: blue liongravilim on July 10th, 2002 06:42 am (UTC)
I can honestly say that accounts for absolutely none of my book-picking decisions. I pick books because I like the author, or it sounds interesting, or someone recommended it.

It wold make sci-fi very hard to read if I wanted to identify with the hero, since they're not always human. Or is it okay if the alien in question is the same size?
Meriver_of_ on July 18th, 2002 06:44 am (UTC)

I don't think I've ever read a book for any reason other than because I liked the author, thought it looked interesting, had been recommended to me or I had to read it due for educational reasons.

Then again I tend to read sci-fi/fantasy and speculative (testing the edges of reality as we know it) books. The sci-fi has a lot of alien lead characters and the sci-fi/fantasy has a lot of group lead stories (as in 3/4/5 lead characters) and the speculative I've read (though tending towards single leads) have mentally extreme characters for the most part (severe depression, hysteria, paranoia, esp, intelligence, etc.) or at least start that way - which I hope I would not be describable as :)

Ytaya: purple headytaya on July 10th, 2002 06:44 am (UTC)
I suppose the biggest question I have is how on earth one determines the size of the main characters without reading the book in the first place.

Sure, I prefer books with characters I can feel some empathy towards - but that's based on their thoughts, feelings and actions rather than their physique. But then, like you, I don't read chick books. They just don't hold any interest for me.
Margaretpling on July 10th, 2002 06:50 am (UTC)
I suppose the biggest question I have is how on earth one determines the size of the main characters without reading the book in the first place.

Oh, but someone does that for you - the website linked to in the post in books lists books about "real size and plus-size" women ... and even in the FAQ lists a handful of authors who only write about plus-size women, in case even reading about a non-skinny-but-not-large woman will give you the raving heebie-jeebies.

(no subject) - ytaya on July 10th, 2002 06:57 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pling on July 10th, 2002 07:02 am (UTC) (Expand)
Phlebasphlebas on July 10th, 2002 06:51 am (UTC)
Hmm. Think maybe bookshops should start having a 'Fat fiction' section next to the 'Gay fiction' section and see what happens?
kierangiant on July 10th, 2002 06:52 am (UTC)
mostly its the same book genre's as you described. but I prefer them to be funny, with some serious plot-twists thrown in for good measure.
personally though, I'd worry if I found a character in a book that was like me
Clearly Canadian :)canuckgirl on July 10th, 2002 06:53 am (UTC)
I'm pretty much amazed by that, too. I read books cause I like the author.

I can't imagine picking books cause of the size of the heroine. I don't understand that rationale...
Jonathanmcurtains on July 10th, 2002 07:48 am (UTC)
If someone is so pissed off with the enforced steroetypes that occur in much current media that they simply no longer want to read/see any more of it, then this makes sense.

It's not quite the kind of bad positive discrimination.

I mean, the only mail order bra catalogue we have in the house is Bravissimo. They don't stock stuff that only comes in below-average sizes. I'm not sure that this is relevant now I come to think about it, actually...
Margaretpling on July 10th, 2002 08:06 am (UTC)
But by going out to look for books specifically about plus-size women you're ignoring a lot of fiction that doesn't overtly specify the size of the heroine or hero. Or even good books that happen to have thin heroines, not because they're special but because some women are thin.
(no subject) - mcurtains on July 10th, 2002 08:13 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pling on July 10th, 2002 08:24 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mcurtains on July 10th, 2002 08:37 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - pling on July 10th, 2002 08:45 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mcurtains on July 10th, 2002 09:06 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - jarel on July 10th, 2002 09:19 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mcurtains on July 10th, 2002 09:32 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - jarel on July 10th, 2002 12:05 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mcurtains on July 10th, 2002 12:27 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - jarel on July 10th, 2002 12:44 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mcurtains on July 10th, 2002 04:23 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - jarel on July 11th, 2002 01:12 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mcurtains on July 11th, 2002 01:39 am (UTC) (Expand)
Ruheruhe on July 10th, 2002 08:30 am (UTC)
Yeah, I think it's a bit bizzare - but I realized that I often select books with female protagonists (but not exclusively). Is this any less wierd?
Margaretpling on July 10th, 2002 08:41 am (UTC)
You do? How odd! I don't think I do that, either ... trying to think what I do look for now. I think it's mostly type - I admit to a prejudice against non-speculative fiction, though it's not to the total exclusion of anything else. And plot theme - and that depends on mood and what I've been reading recently (I go through hard sci-fi phases for instance). Characters I like, too, but gender and physical attributes don't seem to affect that.
Re: - ruhe on July 10th, 2002 09:29 am (UTC) (Expand)
narenek on July 10th, 2002 08:48 am (UTC)
Would reading Adrian Mole books, or Diary of a Teenage Health Freak count (when you are a geeky slightly obsessive teenage boy)?
Ceci n'est pas une vie: miguelmarble on July 10th, 2002 11:10 am (UTC)
I refuse to watch Snow White and the 7 Dwarves because 87.5% of the title characters do not meet my hero-height requirements.
John: sparklejarel on July 10th, 2002 12:05 pm (UTC)

Bigot! :)
Dai Aku: monitorstipe on July 10th, 2002 12:15 pm (UTC)
To be honest, in most cases I'd prefer the hero(ine) to not be my size. And if I suddenly ballooned to 400 pounds, I'd even more emphatically not want them to be my size.

I'm thinking mostly fantasy sorts of novels here, mind. Heroes typically perform all sorts of physical activities (even if it's just walking from one town to the next). It would be absolutely astounding to think that a sword and sorcery heroine could slay dragons, climb mountains, ride horses, fight bad guys with swords, save the world, and still weigh 350 pounds.

With other books where being the hero requires much less athleticism, I don't think it matters so much, and I certainly don't base my decisions on how large the main character is.
Kyrenkyren on July 11th, 2002 04:53 am (UTC)
I tend to read books by a specific writer or genre. I find a book that looks interesting and read it. Then, if I like the character (not the physical attributes but the emotions, etc, that make up the character), I will read more books with the same character in (i.e. a set like Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles or Katherine Kerr's sets).

It's a bit like the way I choose my closest friends. I get to know them first and if they have a nice character we tend to get closer. Otherwise they stay as acquaintances.