You Can Be My Hero

Typically, heroes in romances are Alpha males - strong, silent, protective, and all-powerful. They know what they want and aren't afraid to take it (and the "it" is usually the heroine). Oh sure, there are the occasional Beta heroes, who are more sensitive and less demanding than their Alpha counterparts, but somehow they fail to sweep me away in the same way as the Alpha. (Having just written that, however, one of my favorite Beta heroes of all time is Freddy from Georgette Heyer's Cotillion.)

Along with their standing as Alpha heroes, our guys also have those "Alpha" professions. One of the most popular, of course, is the cowboy. Now I'd be hard pressed to tell you what cowboys actually do all day, but they sure look good in those chaps, tight jeans, and hats. Besides, you'd have to be strong to rope cattle, although I doubt they do so shirtless.

Another popular profession for heroes is a fireman or a cop. For these professions, you have the whole "rescue" thing going on. Never mind that according to my husband, who's a cop, firemen hang out all day at the station baking cookies and watching TV. The general public isn't aware of this shocking fact, are they? Cop heroes always work for romantic suspense novels because why else would some guy run around looking for clues and putting his life in danger unless he was getting paid for it?

Doctors also work as good Alpha heroes. They already think they're gods, and they really can save the heroine's life, unless they're podiatrists or something.

Finally, we have the ever-popular "secret agent man." He can be CIA, FBI, private eye, or a member of an elite secret ops organization. I love these heroes. They work outside the boundaries of the law and the government. They carry cool weapons. They usually speak foreign languages. And they're always willing to give it all up for the love of a good woman.
What are your favorite types of heroes? Do you prefer Alphas or Betas? Do you have a particular profession you like for your men? Who are some of your favorite heroes?


Sandy said...

Another great post, Carol. I married and alpha male, so I have to go alpha all the way. Grin...


Stacey Joy Netzel said...

Yeah, I like this post, too. Especially the pictures! (sorry, Carol, they overshadow your words just a bit. LOL)

I like Alphas in theory, but in real life, I'm not so sure. I think I write alphas with a bit of beta mixed in, but I guess readers would be the judge of that. I believe my dh is a mix, too.

Jill James said...

I'm married to an Alpha, my son is an alpha, and my grandson is an alpha. I'm surrounded by alphas. LOL so from time to time I write Beta males, but they don't resound as well as Alphas.

Nicole North said...

I love alphas, or alpha with a small bit of beta thrown in. Naturally I love those Highland chiefs and lairds. They have to be strong leaders. Being a skilled warrior or soldier is also important for these men. They should know how to handle all sorts of weapons like swords, knives and pistols. And of course they should be highly intelligent and sexy! ;-) I also love cops, firemen, agents, those in the military, and other tough professions. Even if he's some sort of English nobleman, he still needs to be tough.

Liza James said...

Love this post, Carol. ;-)

I prefer Alpha heroes myself. And every Alpha has a bit of Beta inside him, which makes him perfect. :-)

Personally, I have a thing for cops. In both my stories There's Only Been You and Meant To Be my heroes are cops. But I love most blue-collar workers - mechanics, firemen, construction workers. Oh, and I looove cowboys as well. *G*

Some of my favorite heroes (just to name very few) are Joe Winston (Say No To Joe? by Lori Foster), Royce Westmoreland (A Kingdom of Dreams by Judith McNaught), Ricardo Carlos Manoso aka Ranger (Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich).

Carol Ericson said...

Sandy, I guess once you go Alpha, you never go back. LOL

Stacey, that's OK - nothing like a shirtless cowboy to turn up the heat.

Jill, that's a lot of testosterone. I'm surrounded by Alpha males too - even my dog who is an English Mastiff.

Nicole, ooh, those highland chiefs and lairds in thier kilts. Remember Mel Gibson's Wallace had a little Beta - spoke Latin and French.

Liza, I know you love those cowboys!