FC14 Panel: She’s Not Heavy, She’s My Sister


The final panel of the day, after a quick lunch, focused on the roles of female characters and their relationships. I recognised a writer from WFC13, who was appearing on the panel, and had a chat with her before it began.

Panellists were: Roz Kaveney, Mhairi Simpson, Glenda Larke, Charlaine Harris and Den Patrick.

My Notes

– The role of women is over pigeon-holed. This role is often purely to tell us about two men.

– Giving two women different reasons for meeting each other (different motivations).

– Women can touch without being sexually attracted to someone.

– Trust is a good measure of relationship between characters.

– Could female writers be better at writing female relationships? Discussion of Urban Fantasy writers and the way men/women generally use their friends for support/discussion.

– Different women will be attracted to different people. There doesn’t have to be a rivalry – one can like someone and the other not like them.

– Many of the Vikings invading Britain were female.

– Do writers put in romantic relationships because it’s ‘easy’ conflict?

– We write as much for male readers as female ones.


The day ended attending the Mass Signing, being contestants of Pointless and spending a few hours at the disco.

What are your favourite non-romantic female relationships?

2 responses to “FC14 Panel: She’s Not Heavy, She’s My Sister

  1. I’m always hyper-conscious of female relationships in my writing, even more so while rewriting. There are cliches that work their way into first drafts that I may not catch while drafting, but make me cringe when re-reading/writing. I’m all for strong friendships between women in fantasy.

    • I think growing up in the culture we have today has really opened writers eyes to this set of beliefs society holds. It’s great that we’re aware enough to notice those things in rewrites/even when drafting.

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