Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Guest Post - Where did all the good guys go? by Laurie Ellingham

A mere glance at the best sellers list is enough to confirm the stupendous popularity of psychological thrillers, but the growth of this genre is not without it’s casualties. And one glaring loss is that of the good guy. 

You know the one I mean, right? The lopsided smile, green-eyed, charmer. The funny and considerate hero. The tall, oh so good-looking, sometimes clumsy man you can’t resist rooting for. The book boyfriend! 

That’s not to say that the men featured in thrillers are all bad, they’re just not that good either. Some drink too much, some have a tendency to throw a punch, and most don’t have a smile that can turn your insides to mush. 

The thing is, I’m guilty too. In my first novel - The Reluctant Celebrity - I had not one, but two gorgeous friendly men sparring for the affection of my protagonist. In my second book - How to Throw Your Life Away - there was only one, and he had baggage. In One Endless Summer (released on 20th April) there is a grumpy, often rude, shaved-headed, glasses-wearing cameraman called Ben. He’s good alright, but he’ll take a while to warm to. As for what I’m working on now, I’m afraid men - good or bad - are just not getting the same look in. 

But why am I doing away with all the good men? 

In part, it’s because my writing is edging away from romance towards a psychological suspense style of women’s fiction. But that’s not the whole reason. I think there’s a part of me that wants to portray a little more reality to my characters, after all the female protagonists in the majority of women’s fiction novels are eminently flawed. Why do the men get to be so perfect? Why is it the handsome stranger who gets to swoop in and save the day instead of your best mate who’s been by your side all along? 

Where did all the good men go? They’re out there still, and as I write this there are some fantastic author’s creating swoon-worthy men. You might just have to look beyond the thrillers to find them. As for my future novels - expect strong women, expect friendship, expect intrigue, expect suspense, but a good man .... I’m not making any promises. 

I've got to ask, does anyone else have a song running through their heads after seeing the title of this post? I know I do as I'm preparing it. Thank you so much Laurie for this great post.

About Laurie Ellingham

Laurie lives in a small village on the Suffolk borders, with her husband, two children, and their cockerpoo, Rodney. When she is not disappearing into the fictional world of her characters, preferably with a large coffee and a Twix (or two) to hand, she is running through the countryside, burning off the chocolate intake and plotting her next chapter.

To find out more visit, or find her on Twitter @LaurieEllingham and Facebook Laurie Ellingham Author


  1. Totally agree, Laurie! I could have written this post, well, not with the same characters as you have used obviously, but you know what I mean...I'll get me coat. Thanks Rachel too :) x


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