Monday, September 13, 2010

THE WRITE WHISPER: Creating hot heroes

In the reader questions recently, someone asked about heroes so I'm cheating and reproducing an article from my website here:

Great characters draw me into a story and keep me there, making me flick pages at a rate of knots and nothing signals 'page turner' more than a hot hero!

We all know the type of guy: strong yet gentle, commanding yet compassionate, in control but willing to bend to the heroine's will. Throw in gorgeous with a sense of humour and you've got me well and truly hooked!

So how do you create hot heroes in your writing?

Is your hero a take-control alpha guy or is more laid-back beta counterpart?
Remember, every hero is different and having an alpha hero in a Harlequin Modern Heat will be different to an alpha guy in a Romance or a Presents or a Desire.

Here are a few points to help you delineate between the two.

-Make him commanding: the alpha hero is always in control. He likes to call the shots - except when the heroine finally tames him...
-Arrogant? Well, maybe just a tad...the alpha believes in himself and the reach of his influence, totally - until the battle with his feelings for the heroine begins...
-He's passionate: sensual and sexy, the alpha uses his charm and power to get what he wants, though his need for the heroine may ultimately prove stronger.
-Status: impossibly wealthy, probably self-made; the alpha often has celebrity status in the media. The ruler of all he surveys, be it a company or a country. Perhaps a specialist in his field?
-Tower of Strength: the alpha has a steely core, is not easily manipulated and is uncompromising about the things that matter.
-Aspirational: an alpha hero is the guy with whom women aspire to spend the rest of their lives; definitely Mr Right.
-Code of Honour: the alpha has a strong sense of right and wrong, is reasonable and fair.
-Sense of Humour: the beta hero can laugh at himself and life.
-Follower: Betas are more followers where alphas are leaders.
-Self Aware: Betas have more nouse when it comes to what's going on and how they're feeling.
-Easy going: Betas are the laid-back hero whereas alphas are more driven.
-Outgoing: Betas are more sociable where as alphas are more reserved.
-Insecure: Betas may have self-doubts whereas alphas are secure in themselves and their place in the world. Alphas are confident, betas less so.
-Verbal: Betas aren't afraid to express themselves whereas alphas tend to be less verbal and more into the short command, totally used to having their orders obeyed.
-The 'Nice' Guy: Betas are perceived as 'nice' or 'funny' or even 'geeky' whereas alphas are perceived as aloof or unobtainable, even the bad boy.

Keep all these in mind when creating your very own hot hero but remember, your hero will be unique. He may demonstrate more of these characteristics than others. He may turn out to be more beta than alpha or vice versa.

And where does the gamma hero fit into all this? Gamma is a combination of alpha and beta, which would practically make him the perfect man. A tad too perfect for a written hero, perhaps?

Whatever you do, make your man the sexiest hero possible, the kind of guy we can't close the pages on until the last, satisfying scene.