What I want to know is how Alexander McCall Smith can write about women so well. He writes his Isabel Dalhousie stories and his Number One Ladies Detective Agency mysteries each from a female point of view. And it's spot on.
Some men write women and they seem to me like nothing but bosoms and naked ambition -- men inside women's bodies. How do some men get it so wrong and others get it so right?
Of course, the opposite problem is just as prevalent, if not more so: women writing about men, and not getting it right at all. (Think of most romance novels.)
Ultimately, when I write a male character, I want him to be neither a woman in a man's body, nor a stereotype of some ideal of maleness. I want to write about individual, people who can seem real.
I suspect it is a lifelong learning process, to write as another person realistically, no matter their gender.