F261. The (She) Devil Inside: Unlikable Women in Fiction

Room 101, Western New England MFA Annex, Level 1
Friday, February 28, 2014
3:00 pm to 4:15 pm


“Bad men get to be king. Bad women get to swallow poison and die,” wrote Lisa Santoro in the Huffington Post. But why should we settle for such a fate for our female characters, as readers and especially as writers? Do fictional women always have to be sympathetic to be worth reading? Using examples from multiple genres, this panel will examine how bad women can make for good storytelling.



Rebecca Johns is the author of the award-winning novel Icebergs and The Countess. Her work has appeared in the Mississippi Review, Narrative, and Ploughshares. She teaches at DePaul University in Chicago.

Julia Fierro's debut novel, Cutting Teeth, will be released in 2014. Her writing has appeared in Guernica, The Millions, and Poets & Writers. She founded The Sackett St. Writers' Workshop in 2002, a creative home to 2000+ NYC writers.

Lan Samantha Chang is the author of two novels, All Is Forgotten, Nothing Is Lost and Inheritance, and a collection of short fiction, Hunger. She is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and she is a professor of creative writing and director of the Writers' Workshop at the University of Iowa.

Marie Myung-Ok Lee is the author of the novel Somebody's Daughter and one forthcoming in 2015. Her fiction has appeared the Kenyon Review, FiveChapters, TriQuarterly, Witness, and Guernica, and her nonfiction has appeared in the Atlantic, Salon, The New York Times. She teaches creative writing at Brown and Columbia.


March 8–11, 2023
Seattle, Washington

Washington State Convention Center