April 19, 2012

How Many Books by Women Have I Read So Far in 2012?

For 2012, I made a New Year's resolution after realizing I had read way too few books by women in 2011. I think it worked out to something like one out of five books I read were by women. This year I'm going to make sure that it's fifty-fifty.

So after four months, how am I doing so far?

Well, not great. Between January 1st and April 30th I've read 18 novels and 10 novellas. Of those, 7 novels and 4 novellas were written by women. Now, in my defense, the year is far from over and I'm still working through a lot of review commitments, which are predominantly by male authors.

I was going to include anthologies in this count as well, but after I thought about it, most anthologies run pretty even as far as gender parity, so not much sense in counting them in. Best to concentrate on the books written by one author.

I think the medium that is going to get me is graphic novels. I've read four so far this year, all written by guys. Let's face it, unless you know where to look, comic books are a real sausage-fest. Heck, when DC Comics rebooted 52 of their titles, apparently there was only one female writer to be found. I think they've improved that number--to like three or something, maybe. I'll let the fanboys correct me on that one. Anyway, as I'm working through quite a few trade paperback series, like Neil Gaiman's Sandman and Garth Robert Kirkman's Walking Dead, I'm going to need to get some recommendations on graphic novels by female authors. Anya's Ghost by Vera Brosgol, which I read last year, was a great read. Jodi Picoult's Wonder Woman stint, not so much.

So, if you want to give this boorish, chauvinistic troglodyte some directions to the nearest comic book publisher that actually has a robust staff of female writers, I'd sure appreciate it.

And while you're at it, why not share what your ratio is this year? Are you reading more books by men or women?


  1. Since I am participating in the Australian Women Writers Challenge this year my gender reading is severely imbalanced. Of the 89 books I have read so far this year only on 12 have been by male authors. Usually it is far more even!

    Shelleyrae @ Book'd Out

  2. I tend to always read more female authors over male, but I think a large chuck of that is because I enjoy the Golden Era of mysteries, where most of the authors were women. Right now of the books I've reviewed it's about 18 vs 7. I have another 11 books finished that I need to write reviews on and thats at, 6 to 5 in favor of women.

  3. bookdout - Interesting challenge. I think I heard that one mentioned on the Galactic Suburbia podcast a while back, though I could be wrong.

    Ryan - I should try looking up some of those old books, too. I might be more inclined to like them now.