And at the same time, aren't stereotypes pretty useful to a writer? Or maybe we should call them stock characters? I was just working up an exercise for another project and it's on this topic, the making good use of literary stereotypes or stock characters that have already been created for our use (through other literature). I'm talking about such stock characters as the country bumpkin, the femme fatale, the hypochondriac, the town drunk, the ingénue, the sidekick, or the absent-minded professor, and many more. Some would be limited to females, others to males, and some could be either one. So maybe sometimes for literary effect we need to show differences between male mindset and female mindset. Just sayin'. . . I don't imagine every writer creates a character from scratch. But then again I've never written a novel either.