Ask a male author about your male character traits or thoughts.

Amazon links to my stories: Autumn Breeze, A More Perfect Union, Double Happiness, The Wolves of Sherwood Forest, Neanderthals and the Garden of Eden can be found down the right side of the blog.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Guest host & published author, Phyllis Humphrey, will write about the male POV today

Hi, this is Bob. I was going to write about Taylor Swift today, but somebody much more to our point has agreed to guest host. Thank you so much, Phyllis.
Phyllis Humphey, aka, Phyll Ashworth, ( is a prolific romance author who's latest release 'Free Fall' is highly recommended. It asks, can a gal fall for a pilot/skydiver when she's afraid of hieghts? Check her web site out for a wonderous trip through Phyllis's imaginative mind.

By Guest Blogger Phyllis Humphrey

Bob Richard, host of this blog, has been providing interesting and informative posts for some time now. And, in December, his gift to us was a charming short Holiday story.

Ever since the 1990s, when the "female viewpoint only" version of romance novels gave way to male viewpoint inclusion, we female writers have been learning how to make those men into believable characters in our books. The advice we’ve found focuses often on dialogue.

#Men, we’re told, speak less often than women and use fewer words. Scientists have research that shows girl babies start speaking earlier than boy babies, and then talk more than men for the rest of their lives. In addition, men have fewer words in their vocabulary than women so they tend to choose simple words that get right to the point.

#Men, sometimes, use action instead of dialogue to get their views across. And who, reading a romance novel isn’t glad they do? Touching, holding, caressing, kissing does a pretty good job of conveying thoughts and feelings, right?

Men are sometimes described as "the strong, silent type," which can be attractive to women when not overdone. My first husband carried the concept to extremes and I once waited forty-five minutes (in total silence) for him to answer a question before giving up. Since I’m a normal woman who wants and needs communication, small wonder we divorced. But I digress.

However, "actions speak louder than words," so men’s actions in romance novels are often what turns a book into a best-seller. We need those heroic moments, whether it’s sweeping the heroine off her feet, or fighting the bad guys who want to foreclose on the farm. Yet, men’s tendency to "act first and ask questions later" isn’t always the best way to handle conflict. Writers need to know when which approach is best for the story.

Understanding the difference between the sexes is essential for any novel, but especially for a romance novel. Readers will know when something sounds "phony." I’m not saying that a woman who had no brothers and never married can’t write believable man-woman scenes, but she’ll need to do more research than the rest of us.

Which reminds me of an RWA Conference I attended where an author walked around with a Tee-shirt reading, "I Write romance novels," and her husband followed with his reading, "I do the research."
Thank you, Phyllis. We as writers must put on many hats, some of them bonnets, some baseball caps. I very much appreciate your insights.
Although Harry talks up a storm in these two scenes from 'When Harry Met Sally' he was right to the point. No guy you ask will admit to what Harry postulates with Sally, because if they admit it, then they won't get sex, and sex is what all men want. I got to go, my wife is calling. You never know, I might get lucky, but probably end up doing the dishes. But I only do the dishes because I want to have sex. Well, maybe later.


  1. Bob: Thanks for having me on your blog. The clips you chose from WHEN HARRY MET SALLY were perfect.

  2. Thank you, Phyllis. Your post has me thinking about what it means to be male.

  3. Phyllis, some very good observations. I believe even when female writers have pretty well master the male POV, we still write men as we would like them to be and not what they are.

    1. Hi Ann,
      Some would say cynically that that is the fantasy aspect of romance writing and reading. But there are good men out there who might fulfil every girl's dream specifications. Anyway, romance is a great place to be for those who realize that love is the main driving force to living.


  4. Interesting post Phyllis. Lots to think about.

    I enjoyed the video too Bob. One of my favorite movies.


    1. thanks Donna,

      I'd love to take credit for the Harry/Sally clip but that was Phyllis's great idea.

      I updated my blog today to auto-follow your blog, which is well worth the time.