Gender norms are tough in writing. Shakespeare, Twain, Whitman, Hemingway… take your pick. They were each perceived as “manly men,” but each composed a lot of effeminate literature. Women, particularly in the past 40 years, tend to write more aggressively (read: “mannish”) in what I suppose is an inculcation of women’s liberation thinking. [That’s an observation, not a judgement]. Among my favorite Twain quotes: “war was intended for men and I for a child’s nurse”; “I put the pistol to my head but wasn’t man enough to pull the trigger.”
And, of course, we all know that Hemingway WAS man enough to pull the trigger, but still a tortured soul. A good writer (of fiction, at least) is emotive and understands that men undergo comparable, but different, psychological stressors to women.
If you look back at, say Virginia Woolfe, you’d be hard-pressed to find evidence of her being male. Oscar Wilde and (depending on the text in question) James Joyce come across as having feminine writing styles.
I’d say that a lot of it comes down to culture/time period. It wasn’t long ago that a PTSD/“shell shock”/“battle fatigue” diagnosis meant that a male combat veteran was psychologically emasculated. We now view these things very differently (in some cases inversely).
There is a general tendency for women to write more about emotion, while male authors tend to write about action (huge generalization). But males are also inclined to equate the two - when angry, strike back; when sad, self-destruct; when happy, go “sow your wild oats.” Female writers, on the other hand, have a tendency to pursue some level of tranquility (Kate Chopin’s “Joy That Kills” comes to mind - “Body and soul free!”). There’s also often an underpinning of obligation in texts written by women - protecting a child/husband/parent, or righting a perceived injustice. Male authors tend to describe “righting a wrong” in snippets… short bursts of violent action, where female authors will often dig deeper into the origins of that perceived injustice.
All of this is just based on my observations (heck, I was the only male in the Feminine Lit class - sometimes it’s nice to be in the minority ). One thing worth a try in writing characters of the other gender is to ask someone of that gender if you’re way the hell off-base. It can be rather enlightening (and shorten publication time… and result in “fun time”).