DISCUSSION : Stories with Male Protagonist (2)


#1

Archived Topics Cannot be reopened, and it’s been a few months sense this has been closed, I decided to revive it. Here is the link to the original discussion

I’m not asking for help, or guidance.

I want to join in a conversation that talks about stories with ‘Male Protagonists’. Here are some base questions, but anything related to the topic works.

  1. Why do you think authors started adding the option to play as a male.
  2. Do you like to play as a male protagonist?
  3. Is a story truly different if the protagonist is male?
    3A. An argument is that even if you are a male, the character still acts ‘feminine’ thus is still technically a
    female lead story. This usually happens when the author just replaces the MCF with MCM without
    changing any dialog. (Main Character Female / Main Character Male)
  4. Should every story include an option to play as a male?
  5. What are the benefits / disadvantages to writing a story with a male option.
  6. Does Episode equally represent males in their own featured stories?
    6A. Should Episode write a Gem - Featured story inwhich you can play as male. (Or if they have one, write
    more?)

I started this particular topic, as it hit me. Episode wants to get more diverse, but ironically that does not include genders. I understand that this is a female dominated app, but at least giving the option to play as male opens up the story to even more readers.


#2

Personally, I like to play as a male character. It’s interesting to play in a male’s perspective and its fun to me.


#3

There are so many men that play episode, and some enjoy to play as female and some don’t. I feel like we should be able to choose your gender.


#4

For me, the gender of the protagonist really is not a dealbreaker when reading a story. I would enjoy reading from a male’s perspective just as much as I would a female’s perspective. To me, the gender really doesn’t have much to do with how the MC views certain situations. Men and women stereotypically (not always) handle situations differently. But the thoughts and feelings are exactly the same. If I were reading from a female POV, I would not expect anymore emotion or feeling from them compared to if it were a male POV. Or vice versa. In general it makes no difference to me, I just like seeing how different people handle different obstacles in the story, whether they are a guy or a girl. :slightly_smiling_face:


#5

1. Why do you think authors started adding the option to play as a male?
Why not? If you can choose love interests, may as well have the gender choice too.

2. Do you like to play as a male protagonist?
Yes, but if there’s a choice of gender, I still choose female. I prefer to play as a male MC when the story is written with the intention of MC being a male.

3. Is a story truly different if the protagonist is male?
I guess this depends on the story. Again, I think if you are given the choice of gender, you won’t find much of a difference. But a story that’s written from a male MC perspective would be different to a lot of other ones on the platform.

3A. An argument is that even if you are a male, the character still acts ‘feminine’ thus is still technically a female lead story. This usually happens when the author just replaces the MCF with MCM without
changing any dialog. (Main Character Female / Main Character Male)
I didn’t really think about this until this discussion… I’d like to think there are stories that would put in the effort to make both the male MC and the female MC different and give them more believable characteristics depending, however I feel this would be rare. I can’t say I’ve read a story twice to find out for myself though, so who knows?

4. Should every story include an option to play as a male?
Well… I know I wouldn’t be up for that coding challenge any time soon :sweat_smile: I think if it’s the type of story line where you can have the choice, it would be great to add it in. But certain stories need to have certain MC’s, so I wouldn’t say every story needs it.

5. What are the benefits / disadvantages to writing a story with a male option.
I think one obvious disadvantage would be that you’d have thirteen year old girls spamming your fan mail with “why am I a boy?” and “I picked the wrong choice and now I’m a guy, can you change it?”
An advantage though, would be mad respect from the majority of the community, because we all know how difficult/time-consuming coding is.

6. Does Episode equally represent males in their own featured stories?
Don’t make me laugh @FallenAngelNight13 ! Not only do they not equally represent males in their own featured stories, but even when they give you male love interests, they’re so under developed and/or shady and/or one dimensional. If I were a guy reading half the featured stories, I’d be offended that this is how they’re representing us to millions of readers.

6A. Should Episode write a Gem - Featured story in which you can play as male.
Yes, absolutely. Practice what you preach. It’s a bit sad that they had a Male MC shelf not that long ago, but none of their own stories would have fit there. They’ve gotten to the point now where they need to rely on the community to include diversity.


#6
  • Why do you think authors started adding the option to play as a male.
    I think they add it because they thought it’d be interesting to have a male MC and wanted to give the readers more options.
  • Do you like to play as a male protagonist?
    Yeah, I feel like it gives me another perspective to the story.
  • Is a story truly different if the protagonist is male?
    It depends. If the story has a gender choice, maybe not so much, but if MC was meant to be a male you can see huge differences in their reactions or thoughts.
  • Should every story include an option to play as a male?
    Nah, because ultimately it’s the author’s decision. Everyone is free to write whatever they want and some story lines won’t work with Male MC.
  • What are the benefits / disadvantages to writing a story with a male option.
    Some disadvantages would be the coding/branching, the brainstorming (if you’re a girl author), and the fact that you have to basically have two storylines. Some benefits would be that you feel accomplished as an author and increased the number of gender choice stories.

#7

Have you ever thought about writing a story from a male’s POV (or have you already?)

@EpisodeShadow


#8

What do you think would be the first step in promoting stories written from a male-POV?

@Miss_Moonlight


#9

How many stories have you read, that let you pick to be a male?

@Mystery.Author


#10

Only a couple, the majority of stories are from female perspectives.


#11

You know, I have also noticed what you noticed, about what you said regarding the diversity and male mc’s. It’s interesting. It does appear that rarely, the topic of more male main characters is brought up in the same sentence as diversity here. It is both understandable, as you explained regarding the demographics here, yet heavily ironic at the same time isn’t it?

Anyways…

1. Why do you think authors started adding the option to play as a male.

  • I don’t think there is one answer to this. I think some authors have started adding the option to play as a male for several reasons. Some ways that I’ve seen myself are:
    - To tell two sides of the story. (for example, the story Equality)
    - To reach out to a wider audience. Most of the readers in our community are female, but there are also
    readers who are male like myself as well.

2. Do you like to play as a male protagonist?

  • The short answer is yes… I do like to play as a male protagonist… but in the same way that I like to play as a female protagonist: well written, developing characters. This is regardless of what and who they are; male, female, or whatever, it doesn’t matter to me! The gender of the main character is completely irrelevant, at least in my opinion. I don’t have a preference at all.

I am more than willing to follow their adventures and development in a story, regardless of the gender of the main character. :slight_smile:

3. Is a story truly different if the protagonist is male?
Hmm… I’d like to say no? But well… then again, that depends on how the author writes it. There must be more than one answer here. I think it just depends on how the author writes the storyline.

  • For example, if I am given a choice to choose my gender and the author simply changes the pronouns within the dialogue, then no, the story is not any different; it is the same story, just reversed genders by pronouns without any effort of making them unique individuals… right? Though, sometimes this can work if the MC is meant to be a blank state for the reader to insert to substitute themselves as.

3A. An argument is that even if you are a male, the character still acts ‘feminine’ thus is still technically a female lead story. This usually happens when the author just replaces the MCF with MCM without
changing any dialog. (Main Character Female / Main Character Male)

  • Well… as we know, males can act ‘feminine’ as much as females can act ‘masculine’. There is nothing wrong with that; they both can possess some of the traits from masculinity and femininity as they are not exclusive to one gender. However, the only way I can think of a situation that would support that argument is the differences between men and women on the basis of biology; where we have our differences there, we cancel out each other in other areas. But the author could iron out the details. I wouldn’t necessarily say that it’s still a ‘female lead story’ but just the same story with a different character of another gender if that makes any sense? Or ‘the male version’ of this character personality, for example. Overall, it just depends, mainly whether the character is a blank state or not, where you can ‘insert yourself into the story’. I think that is the main factor, and then you can draw your own conclusions from there on out whether it is or isn’t.

  • At the end of the day, we’re all humans, and expectations from society can affect how we act and what people expect from characters depending on stuff like their gender. So while writing a character of a certain gender could be this way, I think the end result is simply how the author writes. I think it should be understood that male or female, too ‘masculine’ or ‘feminine’, it shouldn’t matter because the characters should be human and should be unique people - simply people who are dealing with real-life problems unless the author has a different purpose for the story, regardless of how they act. That’s the key to writing about the opposite gender, or anyone in my opinion.

4. Should every story include an option to play as a male?

  • No. This decision is for the author to make only. Not every story should include an option to play as a male if the author does not want to. Personally, if they intended for their characters to be a specific way and this includes a specific gender, then I prefer to play the way the author envisioned it and nothing more, nothing less. I feel that doing it this way it makes the experience it is more authentic and natural.

  • With that being said, I would love to see to see and play more male MC stories… but if we want that we must be the change we want to see, and most importantly practice what we preach when it comes to diversity. Diversity is everything and anything… right? It also includes male main characters as well. The same goes for Episode’s featured stories.

  • However, the story’s plot and character development and storytelling are more important to me than the gender of the MC.

5. What are the benefits / disadvantages to writing a story with a male option.

Benefits

  • Gives another perspective to the reader.
  • The story can appeal to wider audiences.
  • Because there are not many stories with male main characters, it could be something fresh to the readers if the story is written well.
  • As the majority of this community well supports, it also incorporates an element of diversity.
  • Gives the author an opportunity to learn more skills in terms of being able to branch out and write about things they may not be familiar with.

Disadvantages

  • The author could lose out on particular audiences (a vast majority of the readers/writers here are female and may prefer reading female MC’s as opposed to male MC’s). Although I think they should write for themselves and not worry so much about reads, this could be important to an author who cares about reads on a female-dominated app. Though, writing out of the ordinary will give you a plus and make your story more unique.
  • Can be difficult, but not impossible. It could potentially take more effort and time, and this may appear as an inconvenience to some writers. I feel that this usually happens when an author overthinks the process of writing from another gender. However, the results are well worth it when you challenge yourself and jump into unfamiliar waters; the key to remember is that everyone is a human being, no matter what.
  • Only if not done properly, it can potentially backfire and lead to stereotypical and generalized writing instead of writing unique individuals. This could have a negative effect on one’s audience/readers. To avoid doing this with things you’re unfamiliar with, proper research, planning, and a clear and open mind are all it takes.

Overall, the key to writing about someone who is different than you is to remember that no matter the gender, we are all human and we are all unique individuals despite our inherent differences.

6. Does Episode equally represent males in their own featured stories?

  • No, I do not think Episode equally represents males in their own featured stories. We usually see the typical bad boy, gangster, abuser etc, usually the stereotypical side but almost never the good/unique males. I find this a lot for a many of the User Stories, not just featured in general, though.

6A. Should Episode write a Gem - Featured story in which you can play as male. (Or if they have one, write more?)

  • Yes! I think they should write (or make more) featured stories in which you can play as a male main character.

#12

I have and I will. I made two but that’s for the future. I want to finish the one I had in mind first then focus on my other stories.


#13

Episode, pleaseee feature a story with a male MC. It would be a very new perspective for the app. I think it’s very odd that Episode claims to be so diverse and inclusive, yet they haven’t featured a story with a male lead.

This is a touchy subject for me, because I’m currently writing a story with a male lead, and I’m worried it won’t do that well, considering the demographic of Episode, and all of the work I put into it will go to waste :face_with_head_bandage:


#14

I haven’t thought about that disadvantage, but it does happen to me sometimes with my stories :sweat_smile::sweat_smile::sweat_smile: That one code slips through the cracks every few episodes.

but what if I want to make you laugh? haha - Here’s your question. If you had to pitch a male-protagonist story to the Episode Developers, what would you pitch?


#15

Here’s your question - Can you think of a story where it would be difficult to write from a male’s perspective?


#16

Jealousy in High Heels would be really hard to write from a male’s perspective because the reader gets a first-hand account of the pain Summer feels when she finds out she can’t have kids. I think the fact she’s a woman adds more pain because of that motherly instinct women have plus it added more suspense because the reader started assuming she was pregnant and come to find out it was the opposite.


#17
  1. Two things: 1) for diversity, and 2) because some of the Episode users are male.
  2. Yes, it’s always good to try something different. If all of these stories were from a female’s POV, that would be boring.
  3. I guess it depends on how the story is structured. If it’s a gender-choice story, it’s not different. It’s the same plot and same story.
  4. No. It should be the author’s decision. If I was required to do that, I would probably quit writing for Episode for good because that looks like a LOT of effort.
  5. Pros: It has more diversity, and the app doesn’t have to have just female players
    Cons: It takes a lot of time and effort to do all of that coding :):rofl:
  6. NOOOOO!!! They freakin’ generalize them as bad boys and gansters!!! These creators act like they’ve never seen a nice boy in their lives!!! UGHHHHH!!!

Sorry for the rant.

6A. YESSSSSSSS!!! PLEEEASSSEE!!! PLEASE EPIOSDE PLEASSSSSEEEEEE!!!


#18

That’s such a hard question, because I’ve written some male MC stories so I want to say my own and then I’d get heaps of money from them! HAHA!

But I guess in seriousness, I’d look at any of their featured stories and say “like that but from the love interest’s point of view” That way, they’d still be sticking to their brand. I can’t expect them to make some kind of adventure or thriller story - asking for a male MC is a stretch on its own :grin:


#19

Thank you for writing this all out, I do often fear that I could write a stereotypical POV from a boy sometimes, I’m glad you brought that up.

Your question, which just happens to be my favorite, pitch a male-MC story to episode, yet- it has to be romance.


#20

I came to the same conclusion myself, as a male-MC has yet to happen.

I wouldn’t worry, some of the most loved stories on the app are through male-leads. What made you decide to write from a male POV?