The #SeeHer movement was born out of the need to address the persistent unconscious bias in the portrayal of women and girls in programming and advertising. The average age, race, and body type of the women depicted in content today represent just a small fraction of the female population. That means most women and girls have likely never seen themselves reflected in the media. This is our collective problem as mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters.
So, how do we accelerate the pace of progress in the context of the current media landscape? How do we leverage the growing awareness of the importance of mitigating unconscious bias in order to foster equity and inclusion that is intersectional and sustainable? These are important questions that do not have simple answers. Just as this is our collective problem, the solution(s) will require a collective contribution.
There is a great opportunity to leverage the tremendous power of storytelling, not just to reflect culture, but to create it. We believe that more women and girls will be inspired to reach their potential when the media they see is more inclusive of them. This embodies the #SeeHer mission: portray women and girls accurately so that the images they see in the media not only mirror the real world, but reflect a society they want to live in.
In order to achieve this goal, an important first step is to connect directly with those who are at the frontlines of storytelling: writers. Writers are often the unsung (s)heroes behind the great stories we consume and the characters that become our fictional BFFs. Last month, #SeeHer hosted an intimate dinner with a group of incredible storytellers. We learned a great deal and were inspired to create a space to celebrate storytellers who are already helping us #SeeHer.
That’s why we are launching a new blog series, #WriteHerRight, which will highlight writers who have developed strong female characters and explore their answers to the following questions:
- Describe your strong female character and what inspired you to write her?
- What has been the most rewarding aspect as well as biggest challenge of developing this character?
- In what ways does she go against the grain (i.e. challenge societal norms, stereotypes, and misconceptions about women)?
- Does she embody any of your personal attributes?
- What advice do you have for other writers who want to tell empowering stories about women?
If you have a SeeHer character, we’d love to feature you in this series. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to get in touch with us.
Not sure if your character fits the #SeeHer bill? Check out our tip sheet for storytellers.