Saturday, April 14, 2012

Post by Casea Major -- Eight Male Archetypes

In their book “Heroes and Heroines: 16 Master Archetypes," by Caro LeFever, Tami Cowden and Sue Viders, the ladies identify Eight Male Archetypes in literature

Here are the eight with a brief description:

The Chief -- This hero is the quintessential alpha. He might have been born to lead, or perhaps he conquered his way to the top, but either way, he’s tough, decisive, goal-oriented. That means he is also a bit overbearing and inflexible.

The Bad Boy  -- This is the rebel, or the boy from the wrong side of the tracks. He’s bitter and volatile, a crushed idealist, but he's also charismatic and street smart. He hates authority and doesn't buckle under to anyone, which is why he often chooses jobs where he's his own boss. He's the perfect outlaw.

The Best Friend -- This is the beta hero. He's kind, responsible, decent, a regular Mr. Nice Guy. This man doesn't enjoy confrontation and can sometimes be unassertive because he doesn't want to hurt anyone's feelings. But he'll always be there.  He's a people person and he'll always put the needs of others first.

The Charmer -- Fun, irresistible, a smooth operator, yet not too responsible or dependable. He might be a playboy or a rogue, but he's doesn't commit to a woman easily. He's not crazy about hard work, and he might be in sales, or a gambler.

The Lost Soul -- Tortured, secretive, brooding, and unforgiving. That’s this man. But he's also vulnerable. He might be a wanderer or an outcast. In work he's creative, but probably also a loner, so he might be an undercover cop, or do something artistic.

The Professor -- The first time you meet him, this logical, introverted, and inflexible guy might not be your idea of a hero, but take another look. He is genuine about his feelings. At work, he likes cold, hard facts, but he's also honest and faithful, and won’t let you down.

The Swashbuckler -- This guy is action, action, and more action. He's physical and adventurous. Fearless, he’s a daredevil, or an explorer. He needs thrills and chills to keep him happy.

The Warrior -- This man is the reluctant rescuer or the knight in shining armor. He's noble, tenacious, relentless, and he always sticks up for the underdog. If you need a protector, he’s your guy. He doesn’t buckle under to rules, or and he doesn’t go along just to get along.

I tend to lean toward the Charmer when I'm watching tv, movies or reading a book. But I tend to write Warriors and Chiefs more often.

In my 1Night Stand story Night with a Dom, Dominic is The Chief. He is a 'get-outta-my-way-so-I can-lead kind of hero. Alpha to the core.

At first glance a few of these struck me as similar with very subtle differences, but when I started applying the definition I found more variance then I first thought and it's not always easy to pin down one type for a complex character.

So you tell me – which archetypes are you more drawn to? And why?



Melody Manning’s workaholic ambition, coupled with a slave-driving former boss, has made her the youngest market analyst in her firm. It’s also killed her personal life, including losing her fiancé. When she receives a message from him on New Year’s Eve announcing his engagement to another woman, Mel loses it. Her new, more compassionate boss has the perfect solution for her—get laid. Good and laid.
At his suggestion, she signs up with the 1Night Stand service, listing her deepest sexual desires on the application.  A speedy response from Madame Eve has Melody on her way to Sonoma Valley wine country and a one-night stand with a mysterious Dom.
The sexy, masked Master promises to get to the bottom of her guilt and provide ultimate satisfaction under the safety of his stern hand. After an emotional night of submission and uninhibited passion, will her lover’s unmasking lead to the end of their encounter or give Mel another chance at love?
Major Love ~~~ Major Romance
Prior to becoming a writer of romantic fiction, Casea Major worked in the legal field for a non-profit dispute resolution company for ten years.  She is now a full-time mom to three preschool children with whom she and her husband live happily...most of the time.  When she isn't chained to her laptop, she enjoys Cary Grant movies and crocheting.


Brenda said...

I am like you and tend to write the warrior/chief type, but I am really drawn to the Charmer type.

This is a very cool post!

D'Ann said...

I had the chance to meet these women at a conference once, but was too shy.

Melissa Limoges said...

I love the chief/warrior types. I can take or leave the charmers and others. Love a character that will take control, be direct, and lead the heroine right to the place he wants her, which is usually in his arms. Maybe I'm a weirdo but I like those overbearing, protective types... Le sigh :)

Casea Major said...

D'Ann - I would love to meet these ladies. They are awesome.

Melissa - I do not think you are alone. I think the majority would go for the Chief/Warrior types.

Brenda - You and I really the same person in two different skins. LOL I swear if we lived closer we could hang out all the time and watch LOTR! LOL

Sheri Fredricks said...

I like to read all sorts of characters, but I never put them in a category before. In Remedy Maker, my hero the tortured type. In my current WIP, I think he's more the Charmer/Swashbuckler. lol

Lisa Kumar said...

I write typically write and enjoy reading about the Chief/Warrior/Lost Soul types. But they're all good in my book if pulled off right! Lol, I just love a good hero.

Casea Major said...

Sheri and Lisa, thanks for your comments. I love a good hero in any shape and size too.

Maggie O'Malley said...

I like to roll them all into one character. What's not to love.

Jenna said...

Looking at the list I think I tend to like and write The Bad Boy. Probably because I married one! I've begun writing a Lost Soul, though my current WIP has a Warrior. Love these archetypes! Thanks for sharing, Casea!

Casea Major said...

Maggie - I think you have the right idea. I really think for a character to be genuine he would have to encompass at least a couple of these.

Jenna - thanks for the comment. These are so fun -- just like the Bad Boy because everyone knows what the bad boys are good at. LOL

Harlie Reader said...

For me its the Bad Boy/Lost Soul/Swashbuckler. I know, I can't make up my mind.

Great post and sorry so late.