Poll after poll declare that humor and intelligence are sexy. I agree whole heartedly. In fact, a combination of the two are unbeatable. I am married to a smart and funny guy. (All right, I think he is hilarious but most find him a little cheesy sometimes.)
In contrast to what the polls say, although they are smart, romance heroes are rarely funny. They tend to be dark or damaged, brooding, sometimes sullen, or men of few words. Heck yeah – gimme that James Dean type.) I rarely come across a funny hero no matter whose work I read, yet a sense of humor consistently tops the list of preferred attributes, above even a great body. So what’s the deal? Why do women want their real life men to be funny but their fantasies seldom are?
I have thought long and hard about this, sacrificed hours and countless cups of coffee and chocolate to my pondering, but here is my personal conclusion. As a reader/writer I want a man I can save emotionally while he sweeps me off my feet in his big strong arms and shows me all the reasons he’s willing to overcome/change/be a better man just for me. Sigh... And...more importantly...as a writer my comedic timing sucks. Seriously, crickets chirping level of suckage. More than one editor has said, “I don’t get it. What is he trying to say?” So I simply leave the humor out more often than not – a deep dark hero is easier to write.
BUT...reality is far different. Everyday drudgery and troubles do not enter the fantasy. Real life holds good days and bad. When I crawl into bed at night, I want a man intelligent enough to know when I want him to tilt the axis of my world, and when I just need him to listen while I vent. I want the man who can make me see beyond the negative to the ludicrous when I am on the verge of tears. My hubby can make me laugh even when I’m so angry with him I want to do something drastic like sell his Harley. He always finds a way to break through the daily crap to make me smile. And that folks is crazy sexy to me.
However, in my fantasies, I’ll stick with the strong silent type as long as he’s hot.
Billie Jensen hates liars and cheats. She’s spent her entire life watching her mother forgive the unforgivable with just a few words from a smooth-talking man. So different from her father, Officer Treynor Pandoah seems like everything Bille has ever wanted—quiet, solid, and truthful—until he snuggles up to another woman on Valentine’s Day. He says her eyes lied, but how can she trust a man who won’t share what’s in his heart?
Treynor’s done waiting for Billie to forgive him for something he didn’t do. A man shouldn’t have to explain himself to the woman he loves, but if he can’t find the words to take the tears from her eyes, he could lose her to Unspoken Promises.