03 August 2009

Mammoth book of dudes who write SF.

Take a viddy at the table of contents of the Mammoth Book of Mind-blowing SF. What do you notice about the names in the list? Go on, think a second. I'll wait.

Done? Have a guess? OK, the list is composed of stories by men. Exclusively by men. What this suggests to me, as a woman who writes science fiction (space opera, even), is that there's still a popular notion, among editors and/or readers of a certain age, perhaps, that Girls Don't Write Mind-blowing SF.

Hmm. CJ Cherryh writes some damn good Hugo-winning SF. Lois McMaster Bujold writes some damn good Hugo-winning SF. Ursula LeGuin has written some damn good Hugo-winning SF. The table of contents of The New Space Opera has 4 female names on the list, out of 18 stories. Not quite 25%, which isn't *bad* representation, but it could be better. The New Space Opera 2 has 3 female names out of 19, for a slightly worse representation. But both are far better than 0/21.

I'll be passing on this "mindblowing" SF collection, methinks. (Hat tip to Jim Hines.)

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