Alex is a womanizer. He makes no excuses for it. Yes, he picks up women at the local bar, leaving them with just a memory of a good night and a good lay, but he hasn’t had any complaints yet. That is, until he picks up the wrong woman. Not satisfied to be tossed aside as just another notch in Alex’s bedpost, she curses him, wishing he “knew what it was like for a woman.” And he’s about to find out what she means, embarking on a genderswap journey that he can’t stop.
Alex starts slowly gaining secondary female characteristics, becoming more like a woman than the man he used to be. Alex tries to hide the changes he’s going through, for fear that someone will discover his secret, but keeping this quite literally “under wraps” might be impossible before the curse runs its course.
With the help of his female best friend, Eve, Alex tries to deal with who he is becoming. He feels like he’s lost his identity, his mind not matching the body he now has. But Eve sticks by him, and they become closer as Alex’s changes progress. What started out as friendship may become something more before Alex’s journey is over. Perhaps this curse was actually a blessing in disguise.
Targeted Age Group:: Adults
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
I’ve written a number of manuscripts over the past few years, full-length novels that are in different levels of editing. And I’ve written quite a few short stories and novellas, all of which have been published (or soon to be published). However, I’ve only done NaNoWriMo once. The push to write at such a fast pace, in such a short time, is both freeing and terrifying. But, I figured I’d give it a try once. And as a result, I completed the first draft of His Womanly Ways a couple of years ago.
This novel is unlike my usual fare of works, and perhaps that’s why it came so fast to me. I let myself go and just saw where the plot would take me. And it turns out that it took me to quite an interesting place. The only thing I knew going in was that I wanted to do a genderswap book, but one that was unlike those I had read prior. I have always been interested in the genre, but I find most of it jumps straight to objectification rather than exploration. You’re turned into another gender, so the first thing you do is feel yourself up and try to have sex with the nearest willing person? I don’t buy that.
Essentially your body doesn’t match your inner self anymore. That should cause some kind of journey to either accept or reject the situation. That’s what I tried to do with His Womanly Ways. Alex didn’t ask for this to happen to him, and the process is gradual, as is his acceptance of the changes. His mind doesn’t match the image he sees in the mirror, and that’s important to realize.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
I knew I wanted to focus on the genderswap genre and use the curse aspect to explore the transformation, so a womanizer seemed like a good focus. And because I am a fan of friends to lovers, giving him a best friend that becomes something more seemed like a natural progression. Balancing Alex’s mental and physical changes was very important for me to maintain. This isn’t a sudden man to woman transformation, which you tend to find in a lot of genderswap novels. Instead, this was a gradual change where his body was literally becoming something that no longer aligned with his mental image of who he was. I had to work to make sure that his acceptance and denial was true to his situation, while also making sure that his changes made sense within the context of the story. It was interesting for me because Alex has objectified women for so long, enjoying the pleasure of using their bodies for his own gain, but now that he has the physical characteristics that he used to lust after he must fight against exploring that pathway. And when he does open himself up to exploration, the continual shame he feels in finding pleasure in this body causes constant mixed emotions.
“I don’t need you to courier anybody, okay?” he growled. “This is more serious.”
She gave him a raised eyebrow. “I’m not helping you get rid of a body either. That was just a joke. You can’t hold me to anything I say when I’m drunk.”
“Shut up, there’s no dead body,” he said, untying the strings on the front of his sweatpants. “There’s something wrong with me.”
“For fuck’s sake, Alex, I don’t want to see your diseased dick,” Eve said, covering her eyes. “Go to the clinic.”
“I don’t think the clinic can help me with this,” he said, pulling his pants and underwear down and sitting on the edge of the bed in front of her. Alex pushed his legs apart, splaying them so there was no way she could miss the problem when she opened her eyes again.
“Eve, just look,” he urged, looking up at her.
“No!” she said, keeping her eyes fully covered.
“Please, Eve, I’m freaking out here and you’re the only person I knew to call,” his tone was pleading now and he was starting to freak out again. “Just look at me.”
“I told you,” she began as she started taking her hand away from her face, “I don’t want to see…what the hell is that?!” Her eyes widened as she saw him in full glory, her face losing all trace of color as she stumbled back.
“You should know, you’ve got one yourself,” he said with a pasted-on smirk, but his attempt at humor fell flat.
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