What Makes Men Sexy? What Makes Male Characters Sexy? What Makes Literature Sexy? Why Are We Obsessed with Sex?

I had a brief but interesting email conversation with Rick Mora recently. Rick is a Native American model, actor, producer, you name it. In addition  to his other modeling, he’s been on two book covers in the Romance genre. I loved the most recent one and told him so.

Rick Mora, actor, model, producer

I learned from Rick that Fabio is the most successful Romance genre cover model. This morning, I discovered Fabio has more than 93,000 images on Google and 3,300 book cover images. Here’s a HuffPost slide show of his covers.

I found this very disturbing. I am not a Fabio fan, though I’m sure he’s a very nice person.  My previous blog article, Judgment Day, was about the insidious decline of our culture into a judging and blaming mill. I could easily drop into major judging right now, but I won’t. I will say only that Fabio isn’t my cup of tea.

Who is? This is a surprisingly important question. I expect most of those reading this are authors/writers. If you can’t name what turns you on, how can you write it? And–if it turns you on, will it turn others on? We’re talking market appeal here. Can you successfully project your own sensual tastes on a larger population and have them love what you’ve done?

Join this valuable research project: Ask yourself the questions I ask below, and drop me a comment to express what makes men sexy to you.

What makes a guy sexy? What makes a character sexy?

Seeking the answer, I asked my husband, “Who do you think is the sexiest man in the world?”

“Me,” he said, not missing a beat. “And I’m not looking at any other men.”

There you go: what testosterone does. Complete surety. No false modesty. No need to compare himself to anyone.

This is sexy––very masculine. I agree with him. He’s certainly the sexiest man in my universe. He has an additional compelling advantage: He rides. Nothing is sexier than a good looking man who can really ride a horse. All that sensitivity and restraint. Perfect balance. Split second awareness. Fearlessness. The animal vitality and sweat. Control of a powerful creature with a fingertip. Whoa. Here’s a picture:

Barry Nathan riding Leon Gitano BSN, a Peruvian Paso stallion. Nothing like a stud.

Answering the questions making up the title to this post is a surprisingly difficult exercise, but part of the answer came easily. What men have I known who have stuck in my brain/soul/psyche for, oh, 35 years, give or take? What are their characteristics? I have not been physically intimate with any of these men, yet I can’t forget them.

Priests, monks,  professors, and bosses: Big, big impact from these mentor-type people.  I’ve known a number of priests (Catholic) and monks (Sarasvati order of Hinduism) that captivated me. And there were a few PhDs who caught my eye.

  • I remember one of the priests who was a professor of philosophy when I was at Santa Clara University. A towering intellect, and towering man, he had a huge head of white hair that flew heavenward. Completely oblivious to what he looked like, the black bathrobe thing that the Jesuits wore in those days often gaped at his considerable middle, revealing a white T shirt. His “bathrobe” was covered with chalk dust. Every inch was a mass of wrinkles. He taught Modern Philosophical Issues. When he lectured, you felt the hand of God. The hand was good, but didn’t mind smacking you around a bit. When he preached, students would walk out of the Mission shaken. They didn’t really understand what he said, but he sure SAID it. Whatever he was talking about was so avant that it barely fit in English. I’ll never forget him.
  • His counterpart, who was chairman of the philosophy department, was the exact opposite of the professor above. This priest was spare, with not an ounce of extra fat, upright in his posture and very strict in his thought. You could understand what he was talking about. His clothes were immaculate; not a fleck of chalk dust remained on him. He was close to ancient when I took courses from him. Didn’t matter. He had impact.
  • Monks. I spent twenty five years associated with a meditation group based in India. I’ve known a number of  Hindu monks who have impressed me greatly. These people practiced what they preached. They had attained something spiritually. I can remember standing in a hallway next to one of them and getting a contact high.  What was it that attracted me to them? Their purity. Their recitation of scriptures, their meditation, their spiritual practice had changed their souls and made them very attractive.
  • Spiritual masters. I’ve known two meditation masters and a tai chi master. These people had the qualities of the priests and monks to the nth power. The contact high began when you decided to sign up for something they were leading. I could not think within ten feet of my first meditation master. My mind shut down. The energy he gave off was an explosion. Bliss, ecstasy (the state,not the substance), healing of everything radiates from these people. You don’t think that’s attractive?
  • Guys I’ve worked for. I’ve been very fortunate in that all my bosses have been very cool. One stands out. At the top tier of his field, he started out being a White House Fellow, then got a PhD at the most prestigious university in the country. Taught at Harvard, Stanford, and Oxford. Wrote I don’t know how many major books on business theory. He was the best classroom teacher I have experienced. Was he tough? Mean? Did he yell at people? No, the opposite. He was very clear and mega intelligent, as well as a Zen scholar and practitioner. This showed up in his teaching. Brilliant but soft, innovative but kind. As able to hone in on students’ social and psychological states as he was to read what he’d written on the blackboard. And watching him debrief a negotiation was like watching a surgeon doing a heart transplant. Wow.

Notice that most of the people above were in holy orders. I had no physical or sexual contact with any of them. What made me remember them all these years? A few, primarily spiritual, things:

  • Intelligence. These men were sharp.
  • Passion. These men were passionate about what they did.
  • Vocation. They did what mattered to them and what would impact the world.
  • Energy. We all throw off energy. Spiritual practice intensifies it and purifies it. It makes us attractive to others. It’s fun, no, wonderful, to be around a spiritual powerhouse.
  • Integrity. They walked the walk.
  • Commitment. These dudes were in the game, playing as hard as they could. They were committed for the duration.

None of this says one thing about hair length or color, size of pectoral muscles or other body parts, six-packs, facial construction, or the beauty of a torso or thigh. It’s about what’s attractive to me, and that’s intelligence, intensity, energy and personal power.

As an aside, I think that one of the reasons that so much sexual wrongdoing occurs with the clergy is that what their jobs and spiritual practices make them sexy. People are sexy, but the spiritual lifestyle I’m describing intensifies it  and personal energy. If there’s no outlet, look out choir boys.

Before leaving the area of spirituality to leap into the sweaty physical realm, we need to investigate the relationship between sexuality and spirituality. Is there one? Oh, yes. Have you heard of Tantric yoga? Sex and spirituality embrace in all sorts of ways  Tantric sex is very, very real. You don’t have to follow any particular practice to set it off, either. Combine disciplined sexuality, ignited spiritual energy, and  spiritual practice–you can get yowser-wowser sex of which the Romance industry could not conceive. You can achieve over-the-top spiritual and sexual experience at the same time. Experience that lasts a really long time. Days, even.

Why isn’t more written about sexuality and spirituality? Probably because most writers haven’t experienced it. An interlude in my upcoming book, Mogollon: A Tale of Mysticism & Mayhem, that reads like an over the-top, absolutely impossible, sexual fantasy. It’s not. It’s a write up of one of my experiences.  Maybe we’ll get more people writing about the really good stuff if they realize that meditating for twenty-five years will buy them more than the ability to remember their mantra.

How do we go from my spiritual/intellectual description of qualities in men I find attractive to the grunt and groan sex that people write about? Where’s the hot and steamy?

EASY: ADD A BODY.

Capoeira BSN, a Peruvian Paso Stallion - Our first stallion, ending his life increasing the number of Peruvian Paso horses in Australia. Many men would love his job.

There’s a sexy male body. A stallion. My husband and I operated a horse breeding farm for twenty years, providing us with a wealth of information better kept to ourselves and other horse breeders. (Tends to be raunchy and explicit.) I’ve always wanted to share this wealth. Now’s my chance. Having watched stallions in action, I can say that nothing on the cover of any romance novel or anything else can compare to a stallion in any dimension. You name it: length, width, reload time. Passion, power, pure male force. Duration, number of partners in one session. They don’t call them studs for nothing.

I’m going to quit now, because this is a super long post. I’ll delve into our topic more and be back in a few days. In the meantime, think about what attracts you in a person and what attracts you sexually. Are they the same?

NEWS FLASH – I JUST DISCOVERED THIS: What makes a man sexy? If I am falling off my horse and a man catches me, he is sexy. That just happened to me. My husband caught me, with our horse trainer right behind him.

Catching me creates a deep and abiding affection, verging on idolization. It doesn’t matter what the guy looks like. He doesn’t have to have six pack abs or anything. If he keeps me off the dirt, he’s a god.

There you go, guys, Sexy 101.

If you’d like to read an intense, beautiful, terrifying, imaginative and sexy book, check out The Headman & the Assassin. Can love survive in a bomb shelter 300 feet below the earth’s nuked surface? I consider Headman Sam Baahuhd one of the sexiest men I “know.” Along with Leroy Watches Jr. ofIn Love by Christmas: A Paranormal Romance, which is an Amazon #1 Bestselling eBook in Metaphysical Fantasy. Sex and spirituality, delivered tastefully.

The Headman & the Assassin - I think this is a pretty sexy cover. The guy on the cover is a Russian body builder. And she does stab him in the heart.

Sandy Nathan

Sandy’s Amazon Author Page. Click here of on image.

HERE ARE LINKS TO AND DESCRIPTIONS OF SANDY’S SIX BOOKS!
They range from wild sci-fi to adorable children’s nonfiction. You’ll find something you’ll like in the list below:

  • NUMENON,  a novel about the richest man in the world meeting a great Native American shaman
  • STEPPING OFF THE EDGE, a modern day spiritual companion
  • TECOLOTE, the adorable kids’ book about a baby horse.
  • EARTH’S END––the new, three book sci-fi/fantasy/visionary series that takes you to the end of the earth, and beyond.
    The Angel & the Brown-Eyed Boy––An angelic girl shows up on the sidewalks of New York City in 2197. Or is she a girl? Jeremy Edgarton, teenage genius and revolutionary decodes the transmissions. They say the world will blow up tomorrow morning.
    Lady Grace––The radiation has cleared. A few survivors make it back to Piermont Manor to start a new life. What they face is a battle more deadly than any they’ve fought. Evolution can work for evil as well as good.
    Sam & Emily––Can love live in an echoing cement bomb shelter three hundred feet below the earth’s surface? Find out in Sam and Emily as headman Sam Baahuhd falls in love with a beautiful assassin.


 

 

4 Responses to “What Makes Men Sexy? What Makes Male Characters Sexy? What Makes Literature Sexy? Why Are We Obsessed with Sex?”

  1. J.P. Lane says:

    Whew. You’ve certainly presented a challenge, Sandy. Let me see.
    Vocation: outstanding achievement. Success is sexy. It usually goes hand-in-hand with wealth and fame, which is probably why so many women are attracted to famous and wealthy men.
    I think readers are able to conjure up their own image of a character when we writers present them with only character traits. I give very little description of one of my two main characters in The Tangled Web yet when I asked six readers to describe Logan (out of curiosity) five came up with almost identical descriptions – a cross between Hugh Jackman and a young Sean Connery. This was exactly what I envisioned when I was writing. So obviously certain character traits are associated with a particular physical appearance.
    Eyes can be sexy. How they’re used can say a million things. Here’s an example from the historical novel I’m writing. “Sarah’s gaze was once again fixed on the man when, without warning, his eyes traveled down the table and stopped at her. He lingered on her but for a moment before returning to Lord Berrington who was saying…”
    And of course chivalry of any kind is always sexy. Think it takes a lot more than being a hunk for a character to be sexy, but they’re certain commonalities that all women find appealing.

    • admin says:

      You/ve certainly risen to the challenge, Joan. Success, wealth, fame: all aphrodisiacs. Jackie Kennedy and Onassis. The perfect example. In the article above, I never really got to what I think is sexy; it was, “What do I think is attractive.” Which is intelligence, etc. I have to add in the sexy component. I don’t think that most men you see on the street are sexy. (She shrugs.) I’ll have to hit the movie stars to describe that. Hugh Jackson & Sean Connery, who look like your character, are pretty good examples of sexy.

      Your example is sexy, and arresting. I didn’t know you were writing an historical novel. Good luck on it and thanks for stopping by.

  2. Kim Boykin says:

    LOVE this post, lots of good stuff. Thanks!

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