Monday, April 8, 2013

The Enigmatic, Sexy Male Lead


Congratulations to the "Kai" and "Bn100", the winners in Terri's giveaway. Thank you to all who participated!

You ever wonder what it is about certain characters that suck us right in? You know, the ones that have a certain indefinable quality that jumps off the page and traps you in their story?

I admit that I’m a reader who prefers to be grabbed from page one. And if I’m not equally grabbed by the characters – okay, the male ones, in particular – that’s pretty much a guarantee that I’ll stop reading the book and move onto another one. I know that sounds kinda snobby, but that’s not my intention really. It’s just that there are male protagonists that stand out in the crowd and stick with you for a really long time.

Over the years, I’ve been enamored by a few male characters. Joe Pike and Elvis Cole (Robert Crais). Wrath (JR Ward). Ranger (Janet Evanovich). The thing about these guys is that they all have dark side, though some darker than others. And in the time I’ve been writing, I’ve managed to give birth to my own male character that I lust for. Maybe part of it is because he’s a product of my own imagination, so he’s about as perfect (for me) as a male lead can get. Maybe it’s because I can do with him whatever I want. (Ahem.) Maybe it’s because, no matter how much I know about him, there’s an enigmatic part of him that I’ll never understand. Things about him I’ll never know. Dark stuff he’ll never share.

His name is David Bellotti. An alpha male with shortcomings and flaws, he’s driven to single-mindedness sometimes but he’s also completely devoted to the love of his life, Lottie. In fact, one of the things I love writing most about David is his love affair with Lottie, and the challenges they face that make them grow stronger as a couple. The other thing I love to write for David is his relationship with his mother. She’s eccentric and quirky, a mother who worries about her son and more than keeps him on his toes.
David is the protagonist in my recently released paranormal suspense, Covet. And, if I’m lucky, he’s the guy I’m going to keep writing about for as long as I can.
Here’s a snippet of who David Bellotti is, from Covet:

I sat in my SUV in my driveway, staring at the ass end of my mom's Mercedes and wondering what I'd done to deserve the penance after a long trip back from Turkey. Mom was great but we had a strange relationship. It was supportive and open, but it sometimes bordered on the bizarre. Back in the sixties, Mom went to Woodstock. She never returned. Still dressed like she was there, too. And she took a lot of what she experienced that weekend and incorporated it into her subsequent career as a sex therapist, using any opportunity to offer advice. Alone, in front of my friends, near strangers, it didn't matter. That made for lots of awkward moments and too many memories I'd rather repress, and if it weren't for her genuinely good heart, I probably would have gone into therapy a long time ago.
I edged past the Mercedes and pulled into the garage, knowing this would go down one of two ways. Either both she and Lottie were deep into a bottle of wine and sharing too much information about me, or they were commiserating about life as therapists and sharing too much information about me.

Either way I was screwed.

I killed the engine, grabbed my duffel bag, and hefted it into the laundry room just off the garage door. I dropped it on the floor, opened the door to the kitchen, and halted, preparing for the onslaught. I heard Lottie laugh, my mother said my name and something I couldn't understand, and Lottie laughed even louder. I sighed. Yep. Definitely screwed.

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So what about you? What are your favorite male characters, and why? I’d love to know.

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LEAVE A BLOG COMMENT. Terri will draw from blog commenters for TWO e-copies of COVET (she'll need your email address, which you can send to her directly.) 

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TERRI-HERMAN-PONCÉ looks for any opportunity to make stuff up. Born on Long Island, New York, she thinks anything that can’t so easily be explained is worth an extra look and often makes a great story. She loves red wine, sunrises, Ancient Egypt, and the New York Yankees. The youngest of five children, Terri lives with her husband and son on Long Island. In her next life, if she hasn’t moved on to somewhere else, Terri wants to be an astronomer. She’s fascinated with the night skies almost as much as she’s fascinated with Ancient Egypt.

Terri is a member of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, and Romance Writers of America. You can read about Terri and her stories at http://terriponce.com/ and can find her on Twitter (@TerriPonce) and Facebook.

Giveaway ends 11:59pm EST April 9th. Please supply your email in the post. You may use spaces or full text for security. (ex. jsmith at gmail dot com) If you do not wish to supply your email, or have trouble posting, please email maureen@justromanticsuspense.com with a subject title of JRS GIVEAWAY to be entered in the current giveaway. 



33 comments:

  1. Hi, Maureen, and thanks for having me here! I had fun with this blog post, and I certainly hope I can pass on along some fun reading to two commenters.

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  2. Oh, Terri, I loved the excerpt. David sounds like my kind of fictional guy. ;) I'm still partial to my character, Remy LeBeau, there's something about that displaced Cajun that just keeps bringing me back to him.

    author.winteraustin@gmail.com

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    1. Winter, I think we all have our special leading men and that's a wonderful thing. That's also the beauty of being the creator of a character. As a writer, I can make them whatever I want them to be -- and they're always perfect. And when a reader tells me they love my leading man as much as I do? Nirvana. :)

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  3. Terri,
    Any man who can sound powerful and sexy while contemplating a dicey scene with his mom, well that takes skill. Touche. I love the masculine voice imbued in David. Super smexy.

    And because you posed a question, I'll share my secret male character crush. Ready, set, go: Jericho Z. Barrens. Why: he's anti-social dark, commanding, decadent. I tell this only...because you asked. LOL.

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    1. Oh, Susan. Looks like I'll have to check out this guy Jericho. Sounds like pure yum. And thanks for the wonderful words about David. I try hard to keep his balance, even when he's out of balance. And his mother often does a good job of doing that! LOL

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  4. hey terri,
    great excerpt and hero. yup, the main thing i love in a guy is a sense of humour--and if it can be packaged in a warm and handsome hero, even better. i do love getting to write my own ideal (but flawed so he's not annoying) man.

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  5. Flaws are good, Nora! And are they ever really annoying in a leading man an author creates? I hope not! Otherwise they become a little too real. :) So happy to see you here and thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts.

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  6. Love the excerpt, Terri! I have both of your novels on my Kindle. Can't wait to read them!

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    1. Deborah, I truly hope you enjoy both books and thanks so much for stopping by. I appreciate the visit!

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  7. Oh my gosh, I loved that snippet!
    And I agree about Ranger. I'd add Roarke from JD Robb's In Death books. He definitely has a dark side, but he loves so hard and he's so sexily Irish I can't help but have a crush on him. Thanks for a great post!

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    1. Wow, Beth. It's been a while since I've read Roarke. Yeah, that dark side is just SO uber sexy. Gotta love it.

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  8. Hey Terri - I must say David does sounds yum! I have a soft spot for bad boys with hearts of gold and tragic heroes, myself. ;)

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    1. I love men who are yum, and that seems to be the word of the day lately. Bad boys always seem to get all the reading love, don't they?

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  9. Zsadist from the BDB series because he's alpha and overcame a lot.

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

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    1. Ohhh, yeah, the BDB. I love Wrath, as I mentioned above, but I have to admit that they're all amazing characters and male leads. If I had to pick a second, though, I'd go with Butch and Vishous. Both are tied for hot in my book.

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  10. Kresley Cole's Lothaire. He was such a bad-ass for many books in the Immortals After Dark series. When he got his own book, bad-boy sort-of redeemed. I do love tortured heroes. All the best for your release Terri!

    ~Karyn Gerrard (to lazy to log in)

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    1. Thanks so much, Karyn. I read a Kresley Cole book a long time ago and still have it on my shelf. Never pursued reading more of her though, and maybe I should. There are so many good books out there, and so little time.

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  11. Ranger and Morelli, are some of my fav guys, as well as many of the men in Carla Neggers' books, (North, Brooke). Put together a few flaws, sexy dark side and you've got my attention. Looking forward to reading Covet!

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    1. Galen, Ranger and Morelli were the first bad boys I think I ever loved. Honestly, I started with Morelli first and that lasted one book. I've been into Ranger ever since! Thanks for coming by and sharing your thoughts. Truly made my day.

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  12. Ohhhh my favorite male character is Noah...from The Notebook. <3 him.

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    1. Am I the only person who hasn't read The Notebook? Sheesh. I'm slipping. Another book to add to my TBR pile, which is growing bigger by the day!

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  13. Great post. Loved the excerpt and was excited to read it from David's 1st person POV! Will have to add it to my TBR pile. I'm with Beth and I'd add Roarke from J.D. Robb In Death series. Yum...

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    1. Have to say that I had the best time writing from David's point of view. I love getting inside his head. If you eventually read Covet, Erin, I truly hope you enjoy it. Thanks so much.

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  14. Loved it Terri! Great excerpt!!

    Dottie :)

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    1. Thank you, Dottie! I'm happy that you came by to visit and drop a line. So very appreciated. :)

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  15. I'm enjoying the male characters in George RR Martin's series A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE. Jaime Lanaster & Jon Snow in particular. What George puts his characters through!!!

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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    1. Oh yeah. I haven't read that series, Mary, but I'm addicted to the show. And yeah, Jon Snow has not had an easy time of it but man, he's a great character. All of them are, but I'm fond of Jon. The child never loved...

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  16. Congrats to Terri on the new release! It sounds awesome! I tend to really like supernatural alpha males. I think in my mind, they can get away with the alpha behavior b/c they aren't human. A good example of that is Curran, the shapeshifter "king" from Ilona Andrew's Kate Daniel series.

    efender1(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Ooooohhh. Another alpha male to check out. Thanks for the tip, Erin. And I agree - alphas with supernatural abilities really do get away with a lot, don't they?

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  17. I love Max Savoire from the Moonlight series by Nancy Gideon. Max is a wounded soul who is trying to figure his place in the human world. His mother has been killed trying to protect him. So he was raised in a human world. He is were but he is a purebreed were and trying to figure out his level of power. Even though he is on the opposite of the laws, he tries to do right. How can I not love Max?

    kmccandle(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. Max sounds interesting, Kai, and I can see why he catches your attention! A wounded warrior, so to speak. How can we resist them?

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  18. What of your first 'lust after' male character, WTR? He was a character on paper before the TV series and then featured in many novels afterward. I thought he was the first to get your creative juices flowing too...?

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    1. Ha! Unknown is a close friend of mine who's reminding me of where I made my writing start -- in Star Trek: The Next Generation fan fiction. But see, David Bellotti, MY character, is a heck of a lot hotter. Coz I made him. :)

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