Move over lady writers, “man fiction” is coming to town. Esquire magazine will begin publishing a series of “Fiction for Men” e-books in June, the New York Times reported this week.
Each volume will contain a series of short stories by male authors. The first one includes fiction by Aaron Gwyn, Luis Alberto Urrea and Jess Walter and will be released around the same time as Esquire’s June/July issue, which will also contain several pieces of fiction. Editor in chief of Esquire, David Granger, told the New York Times that the recession has meant that magazines have been skimping on their fiction. “Fiction begins to feel a little bit of a luxury,” he said.
Granger also specified that “men’s fiction” meant “plot-driven and exciting, where one thing happens after another. And also at the same time, dealing with passages in a man’s life that seem common,” he said. But, how new is “Fiction for Men” really? Doesn’t that just encompass many of the acclaimed -- and not so acclaimed -- novels already out there that are written by and about men? Jezebel’s Erin Gloria Ryan poked fun at Esquire’s initiative:
Finally shedding the yoke of female dominance of the literary arts, the oft-ignored and long oppressed minority group known as "men" will finally have things to read made just for them.
Author Jennifer Weiner, who has argued that female fiction writers are undervalued and underrepresented in both media attention and awards, suggested that Esquire reach out to one of the “Bachelorette” suitors who wrote a particularly lengthy love letter on Monday night’s episode:
Dude complains that Ryan has written a novel. Editors of Esquire's new "fiction for men" e-books start Googling for his agent. #bachelorette
— Jennifer Weiner (@jenniferweiner) May 22, 2012
Only eight out of the Modern Library’s Top 100 Fiction Novels were penned by women, and only 12 women have won the Nobel Prize for Literature since 1909, Jezebel noted. In addition to being underrepresented in book awards, a survey conducted by VIDA, an organization dedicated to women in the literary arts, in March found that female authors are also vastly underrepresented in book reviews, and The Huffington Post discovered that this is also the case at large publishing houses. “Fiction for Men” is all around us.
We want to know what you think the name for this genre of “Fiction for Men” e-books should be. Tweet a title to @HuffPostWomen using the hashtag #ManFiction and we’ll feature them in a slideshow here!
LOOK: What Our Readers Would Name "Fiction For Men"