Do you think it is harder to write a good fictional female character than a male character? I do.
I can think of about a gazillion male characters that I love and respect, and far fewer women. A few do come to mind--Olivia from "The Weather in the Streets," Elizabeth in "Pride and Prejudice," Molly Bloom in "Ulysses." Tolkien's Arwen Evenstar, Galadriel, and Eowyn. I dig Hermione Granger too, and Ginny Weasley (Rowling did a good job, although disappointingly her most fully-fleshed characters are boys and men). I can think of others, but it is far easier for me to come up with the simpering, the foils, the falsely plucky-can-do girls, the girls who are pretty with not much else to recommend them, the girls who are attractive because they are beautiful and disturbed (case in point, Caddy from "The Sound and the Fury), the ones with not a drop of humor in them (all Virginia Woolf's characters, I mean I love Woolf, but c'mon, never has there been a more overly self-serious set of characters)...I could go on. Both male and female authors are guilty of the poorly-drawn, stereotypical female, just as some of my favorite women in literature were created by male authors.
Anyway, I've been asking myself, what makes a strong, real, viable woman character in a novel? Who are your favorite female characters from fiction, and why do you like them?
I would love to hear what you have to say on this topic if you get a chance.