Our minds are very similar whether you’re male or female. Virginia Woolf said that the imagination is androgynous — the way we think, the way we experience the world is universal. But we go through the world in these bodies and the male body and the female body are very different… Things that are very physical are hard to imagine, and that’s when getting your best female friend to read a passage and tell you if it sounds truthful is very helpful.
I wrote a sex scene from the point of view of a woman and I was very happy when a friend said to me, “God, how did you get that right?” So there are places the imagination can go. My life is filled with men and women so being a part of what you do as a writer is observe, and if you have an open mind you can take a lot in and that helps you put a lot out as a writer. Sometimes the things you get wrong are the kind of language people use… Writing is all words, so sometimes it’s just about the choice of words.