Tillman was more practical, wondering whether a little “healthy narcissism” might help women write.
“There’s so many women in the audience,” she said, “and what I feel is the frustration of this situation for women. It’s really difficult, but it shouldn’t stop you from writing. If anything, it should kick you in the ass.”
“I was thinking about narcissism, and [Narcissus]—it’s the story of this person who is looking at himself in the water and fell in the water,” said Delorme. “But the desire is to see oneself, to see my face in the mirror. And I feel like a lot of female writing, feminist writing, queer writing, is about seeing yourself represented.” In this sense, she said, narcissism can be empowering—can be good. “But then comes the bad narcissism,” she added. “Which is, we’re really busy looking at ourselves and criticizing other people who don’t represent us. And how to make this constructive and powerful is now the issue.”