#WritingChallenge! The Alpha Hero

by Deirdre

WritingChallenge imageThis week some of our editors got into the Halloween spirit and participated in the Toronto Harlequin office’s annual Halloween costume contest. Taking a cue from Harlequin’s “Romance When You Need It” ad campaign, several of the editors dressed as Harlequin Heartthrobs. You can spot some of our favourite heroes (and maybe your favourite editor) here:


At Harlequin, we love our cowboys, firefighters, surgeons and small-town cops. And nothing says Romance with a capital “R” like an Alpha Hero!

But how do you create a successful Alpha Hero? What’s acceptable “alpha” behavior today? How do you create a character who’s in control, supremely confident, sexy, accomplished and assertive, but not, well, a jerk?

Your challenge this week? Give us your take on the contemporary Alpha Hero! In a few sentences (no more than one short paragraph) tell us about your hero and what makes him Alpha and Irresistible!

Tip: as our editors noted in this So You Think You Can Write post, the key to making an Alpha attractive is making him fully realized – and flawed.

“Know his weaknesses and have the heroine, and the storyline, challenge them – force him to change. Giving him recognizable human flaws will ensure your hero is emotionally convincing, not a 2-D caricature of a wannabe Alpha male poser!”

Post your Alpha Hero character description in the comments below any time between now and Sunday night, and we’ll check in with you on Monday!