Saturday, April 18, 2009

All About Alphas 2 - Mills and Boon Checklists

Over on the Mills & Boon Community site editor Jenny Hutton has given this checklist of the way that the Alpha hero appears in all the different line.

So you'll see that he is not just the sort of man people immediately describe - usually based on their image of a Modern/Presents hero - as an Alpha hero being something of a domineering bully.

I'm giving you this as it appears from the editors though I'm just going to say a couple of things where the Modern Romance/Presents Alpha is concerned - and I'm going to be honest here.

One is that, for me, "believing in himself and the reach of his influence" isn't actually being arrogant. It can appear that way at times - particularly to the heroine when she and her situation conflict with and challenge that innate sense of self that the Presents hero has. But in my book he's probably entitled to that sense of self - he's built himself up to the position he's in, and he has earned it. So I'm not going to use the word arrogant - sure of himself, fine. For me, it's something like the comment on Honour for the Historical stories - the Modern/Presents hero can come across as arrogant in that challenged situation but he's not trampling other people underfoot arrogant.

And I would want to add that, just as with the Romance hero, that my Modern/Presents hero - darn it - any hero - needs to have that Code of Honour - that strong sense of right and wrong that is the foundation of the way he lives.It's when that core of honour is - I'm going to say that word again - challenged that he comes out fighting.

OK so here's the list:

Mills & Boon Modern Romance®
Commanding: he’s always in control and calling the shots – except when the heroine finally tames him…

Demanding: he’s come a long way since his emotionally or financially impoverished childhood; he wants it done, and he wants it done now!

Arrogant: he believes in himself and the reach of his influence, totally – until the battle with his feelings for the heroine begins…

Passionate: sensual and sexy, he 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; often has celebrity status in the media. The ruler of all he surveys, be it a company or a country

Mills & Boon Modern Heat®
Young: he’s aged between 25 and 35 and has yet to settle down

Confident: he knows what he wants and has a good idea of how he’ll get it; he knows he’s attractive and relishes challenges – he might have a extreme hobby

Easy-going: he plays as hard as he works, knowing how and when to have a good time. He doesn’t sweat the small stuff…

Accessible: he’s very approachable, but his physical presence and his confidence and charm make him stand out from the crowd

Status: he hails from all walks of life and can have any level of success and wealth

Mills & Boon Historical Romance®
Strong: he could appear unyielding, determined to claim the heroine but he would lay down his life for her

Charming: he can be a rake, a cad or a bounder – but ultimately he’s redeemed by the heroine who’s the love of his life

A Man of Action: he can lead armies into battle, or influence political or local events

Honourable: he may have killed on the battlefield, but is fair in his treatment of his men

Status: either financially, politically or militarily powerful; often a member of the first estate

Mills & Boon Romance®
Tower of Strength: he has a steely core, is not easily manipulated and uncompromising about the things that matter

Aspirational: the guy with whom women aspire to spend the rest of their lives; definitely Mr Right

Code of Honour: he has a strong sense of right and wrong, is reasonable and fair

Sense of Humour: he can laugh at himself and life; he’s often understated and modest in manner

Status: Definitely successful, can be wealthy or just comfortably off; perhaps a specialist in his field

Mills & Boon Medical Romance®
Dedicated: his primary objective is to save lives; he has high standards and expects the same of others

Strong but Caring: he’s approachable and has a great bedside manner – he shows compassion and passion to his patients and the heroine

A Mover of Mountains: he will do whatever it takes, and then some, to save a life or resolve a medical issue. A man of action

Respected: he’s well respected in his field and is committed, honourable and human

Status: a senior member of the medical profession, or has a connection with medical profession, e.g. senior firefighter


Annie West said...

Hi Kate,

Thanks for posting these lists for the different lines. They make fascinating reading.


Kate Walker said...

I'm glad you found them intereting Annie. It is fascinating that there is an 'alpha for every line' - not just one single totally defined Alpha with no variations

Annie West said...

Oh, definitely, Kate. There's an almost infinite variety, don't you think? That's part of what makes writing and reading them so enjoyable.

Monique Wood said...

Kate, this list is brilliant. I've always wanted clarification. It helps enormously because I'd like to write for more than one line (if I can).

And Annie, hello there! *waves*

mulberry said...

This series is fab, thank you so much Kate for all the inspiration.
Looks like my current hero fits Modern Heat best, shame the story is supposed to be a Modern!


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