|Yul Brynner and Steve McQueen in the hearse scene, The Magnificent Seven|
|Steve McQueen as Hilts, The Great Escape|
1. Make Sure He's Not a Douchebag
Okay, this one seems like a given, and it's pretty ridiculous. But, sadly, more and more I see total douchebags being pushed as "strong" and "masculine" and "tough." In my book, men who are rude and cruel to women, men who talk non-stop about how awesome they are in bed, men who make fools of themselves for a little attention - douchebags. Controlling jerks who tell you what to wear, how to act, what to say, and who curse and insult you are NOT STRONG. They are insecure and I WILL NOT write male leads like this. Not ever. There's enough douchy fools out there in the singles' scene, I don't need them in a novel, thank you very much. All guys brag, and talk shit, and give each other grief, tease and poke fun, but there's a big difference between someone being a little cocky, and being a total jerk.
Okay, rant over.
2. When it Comes to Dialogue, Less is More
|Chris Hemsworth, Thor|
3. Tough Guys Aren't Bullies
|Chris Evans, as skinny Steve, Captain America|
Picking on people for sport isn't a show of strength. End of story.
4. Confidence is Quiet
|Clint Eastwood, The Outlaw Josey Wales|
5. Cussing Doesn't Make the Man
|Bruce can cuss however much he wants to.|
Unless you're Bruce. Then you can cuss however much you want to.
6. Strong Men Are Respectful to Ladies
|Denzel Washington as Creasy, Man on Fire|
7. Tough Guys Don't Have Some Universal Rule Against Falling in Love
|Viggo Mortensen and Liv Tyler, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King|
8. Individuality is Key
|Devoted knight, bucking the system when morality calls for it, Ser Davos Seaworth, Game of Thrones|
9. There Are Different Kinds of Strength
|Hobbitses, The Lord of the Rings|
|Chris Pratt, Guardians of the Galaxy|