Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Thursday Thirteen, Edition 9

Recently a friend of mine posted on my Facebook wall, "I like your blog, Nicola, but what exactly IS an Alpha Hero?" So, never one to settle for a concise or simple answer, since it's Thursday (or will be shortly), I give you:


It’s funny, but if you’re researching the topic, the search engine hits tend to turn up items in three categories: 1) Romance heroes; 2) Dog training/animal study; and 3) How to get laid (for guys). Let me save you a little work and provide some of the more interesting links:

In the romance category

1. An excellent article from a romance writer’s perspective.

2. A classic. One of my favorite articles on the subject.

3. Ooo. Look at this little gem. Adding to my blogroll...

4. Nalini Singh on alpha aeroes: (Googling on “alpha heroes” is how I discovered Nalini in the first place)

On dogs, wolves, and pack behavior in general

5. Wikipedia on the role of the alpha male in pack animals.

6. Alpha male body language, with parallels to the animal world. Possibly over-simplified, but not bad for a quick read.

7. An interesting take on the old saw about how men aren’t cut out for monogamy.

Looking for new techniques to score with the lay-deez?

8. This one cracks me up with the depth of its wrongness (cue the bowm-chicka bow-wowm). Don’t miss the comparison between feminine men and masculine (alpha) men. Try not to sprain an eyeball.

9. Here is a blog that sort of leaves me speechless. Intelligent misogyny always does things to my blood pressure – it should be a contradiction in terms, but unfortunately isn’t. His deconstruction of alpha behavior though is spot-on. Check out the posts on movie scenes.

A little more seriously

10. Alphas in business and government.

11. I like this one. The author treats the subject with the complexity it deserves, and I especially like this comment: Power is granted to you by the group. You don't have power unless other people give it to you. Here's the catch, the group gives you power on the condition that you look out for their needs. That's the deal. You get extra power to serve them. This is actually a link hub and the sidebar of other stuff looks great, too.

Finally, I have a couple of excerpts from recent reading:

12. From Kelley Armstrong's Bitten:
"When I call, you call me back," he said, his voice deceptively soft. "I wouldn't call you if it wasn't important. If I do call, you answer. That was the arrangement."
"Correct, that was the arrangement. Past tense. Our arrangement ended when I left the Pack."
"When you left the Pack? And when did this happen? Forgive me if I missed something, but I don't recall any such conversation, Elena."
"I thought it was understood."
Clay walked in the room carrying a tray of cold cuts and cheese. He laid it on the desk and looked from me to Jeremy.
Jeremy continued. "So you're no longer part of the Pack now?"
"Then you're one of them -- a mutt?"
"Of course not, Jer," Clay said, thumping down beside me on the couch. I moved to the fireplace.
"Well, which is it?" Jeremy asked, his gaze skewering mine. "Pack or not?"
I failed to mention in my review of this book earlier this week what an amazing job that Armstrong does of weaving Pack and Alpha behavior, mentality, and norms through the whole book. Jeremy is a quiet sort of Alpha, but WOW. His interactions with-- well, with EVERYONE else in the book leave NO question that he is The Top Dog. It was a little bit hard to find a good quote because it's an effect that builds up through the whole book, and the dialog is particularly powerful.

13. And finally, from The Alpha Factor, a business book by Wes Ball:
True pack behavior is not (as it is all too often described) a jungle-type model, with the strongest and most intimidating always winning. Actually, a pack that operates like that cannot survive for long, and any Alpha that tries to lead using these techniques alone seldom lives very long, so the pack suffers. The Alpha's primary jobs are to help the pack find food and to manage the relationships within the pack....the Alpha is surprisingly compassionate and nurturing in how he accomplishes that task.

It's when this compassionate, service-oriented piece of the alpha behavior is missing that a would-be Alpha trips over the line into Asshole territory.

Visit the Thursday Thirteen site here.
The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!


Anonymous said...

I was just talking with a fellow Romance author about alphas today. #11 and #13 give me new insight into what we were talking about.

Mia Celeste said...

This is really informative. Thanks for sharing.

Janet said...

it's why I like watching The Dog Whisperer...he's an alpha :-)

Lori said...

Lots of good research here. When I get another free moment, I'll have to come back and read a few. Thanks!

Karen said...

Lots of great thoughts in this blog... things I didn't know so thank you for sharing! Happy TT.

Chris said...

Thanks for the links! I'm enjoying the reading.

Debbie@Like a Rose said...

A very informative post - thanks.

Anonymous said...

Excellent research job! I haven't got time to go through all your links at the moment, but I will later tonight. I think I'll especially appreciate the misogynist one. I always enjoy learning about those guys' thoughts. Happy TT!
BTW, I'm all for alpha heroes, but lately found that a nice Beta isn't to be sneezed at either.

Anonymous said...

Me again. Have you read the article Roissy parodied? The one with the Beta husband. This so fits. I think the guy's hilarious.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I had no idea. It just never occurred to me to look this up. Thanks for sharing!

DoubleDeckerBusGuy said...

But what about the omega to match the Alpha... or is that next week? :)

Marsha said...

Great list! For me that alphas play better in books than in real life. Conversely, although I have a scrumptious gamma for a husband, I don't want to read about one. Maybe this is about the escapism element of romance reading?

Shelley Munro said...

Excellent list of links. I'm going to come back and explore some of them a bit more once I finish my edits.


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