10.3.14

What a Grown-Ass Woman Wants (#GrownAssMan Tour)


New Adult has taken the romance world by storm, which is pretty cool---especially considering that my first novel, Three Daves, is a college love story---but some of us thought it was time to celebrate the fully-formed man and all the lovely things he can bring to romance. By some of us, I mean:

(BTW, All Featured Novels Are Specially Priced At Only $0.99 – $2.99  Throughout The Tour!)


Each of us has spent some time falling in love with a fictional man over the age of 30 while we wrote the novels listed above. This week, we're each talking about grown-up love from our own perspectives, and we invite you to join in on the conversation. Please click on the links above to visit each author's post (and see what they're giving away at their places). Be sure to also stop by the Omnific Publishing blog to enter the Grand Giveaway---win a $50 Gift Card + a Grown-Ass Man eBook Collection. For a snippet about each of the authors and their Grown-Ass novels, visit my website.

My topic today is Grown-Ass women---or men---and how what they value in a mate has changed from when they first started mate-seeking. I chose this topic because it was the driving force behind writing Divine Temptation. As I've said before, I wanted to see how a mature woman with adult responsibilities would react to an otherworldly white knight being suddenly thrust into her life. I suspected her responses would be quite different from those of a teen or early twentysomething, and they were.

Not only did Maggie have adult responsibilities to keep her grounded, she'd learned through life experience---including a painful divorce---to appreciate different qualities in a man than she had at earlier points in her life. She even learned to admire qualities in her ex-husband that she hadn't paid enough attention to while they were married. So Divine Temptation is a very different kind of love story than Three Daves. I think that's true of all of us, don't you---that our personal love stories morph as we grow older because what we value in a mate/potential mate changes as we progress through this life?

I clearly remember what I was looking for in guys when I was an undergrad at EIU---my roommate and I called this ideal: Fun Guy. I was looking for the life of the party, someone who'd make me laugh and laugh. And I found him. I found lots of hims. But I also learned that Fun Guy was often synonymous with Drunk Guy. And that Fun Guy often turned into Overly-Sensitive and Needy Guy when not the center of attention.  And he was almost always Selfish Guy.

My mate-seeking days are over, for better or worse, but I can see how my mate-dar has changed over the years in how I advise my daughter about boys. My number one advice: pay attention to how he treats his mother (and yes, I make sure my son is close enough to overhear). Is it with respect, thoughtfulness, and genuine caring? Or does he tend to disregard her unless he needs her for something? This is a good indication of how he'll treat the rest of the long-term women in his life. I also tell her to not discount the shy, socially awkward guys. It doesn't matter if he can't make a room full of people laugh as long as he makes her smile.

So how about you---how has what you value in a mate changed since you first started dating?

To say thanks for making me one of your stops on the tour, I'm hosting a li'l giveaway below. After you enter, please do hop around to see what the other authors have to say about Grown-Ass love. Don't forget to enter the Grand Giveaway at the Omnific Publishing blog.



34 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Well, that does explain why women end up with those kinds of guys.
I'd always wanted someone who as stable and shared my interests. And sexy! Fortunately, I still have her.

Jennifer Lane said...

Great post! I suppose Fun Guy, in addition to being Self-Centered Guy, doesn't own a car or a mortgage. ;-) So true that our needs change as we age. I've been seeking a strong and emotionally intelligent guy. Yeah, I'm still single!

Lindsey V. said...

I think paying attention to how a guy treats his mother is great advice! It definitely would be a deal-breaker if he was crappy to his family.

Thank you so much for the post and giveaway!

Rachel Brimble said...

Great post, Nicki! I am loving being a part of this tour and taking part in the 'older' man appreciation society. There are so beautiful older men out there, lol!

Rachel x

Feather Stone said...

So much has changed since I was on the dating scene. I'd be terrified to dip into that circle again. My dating criteria was simple - can I trust him. Now, I would be looking for more. I loved your book, Divine Temptation, especially as the characters grew to understand themselves amid the chaos and crisis. Thank you, Nicki.

SaturnMoonie said...

A few small things have changed. I think the biggest thing that I can think of is arguing. This may sound weird, but I appreciate a good argument. It means they have their own opinion and aren't afraid to stand their ground. They have something to say. They don't just follow you blindly and pretend to have the same views you do.

I remember how shocked I was when I broke up with my HS boyfriend and he stopped showing up to our Astronomy club. I found out from a mutual friend that he'd only join because I was in it and wanted to get closer to me. Astronomy was one of the things (I thought) we had bonded over. To think that he only pretended to like it was heartbreaking - even more so than the actual break up.

L.G. Smith said...

Yay for the grown-ass man tour. :)

I have absolutely no credibility on this topic, but I do think a sense of humor is very, very desirable in a man. If he can make me smile, he's won half the battle. :)

Janie Junebug said...

When I was young, I wanted a man who would take care of me because my mother said I needed someone to take care of me. Taking care turned into controlling. Now I have a partner (in crime).

Love,
Janie

Cherie Colyer said...

Paying attention to how a guy treats his mother is great advice. I think I might add to pay attention to how he treats your mom, too.

Sarah said...

Great post and advise to your kids. It's true! The trait I look for now that I didn't when I was younger was touches as a sign of affection and not just to warm a girl up. ;)

Elise-Maria Barton said...

As I've matured I've learned to tell the difference between "controlling asshole" and "Dominant". An in control man who leads with my best interest always at the forefront is something I've always needed but just lacked the experience to recognize 20 years ago. Anybody have a time machine I can borrow?

Autumn Markus said...

Oh man. Who didn't lead with 'looks' when they were 20? I didn't necessarily like traditionally handsome guys (BH is actually an exception to my general rule), but I had a definite type-the 'arty/edgy (most likely self centered and douchey)'look. BH was kind, funny, and practical smart (as opposed to my only book smart)--I thought he was too nice to trust (lol). Now I tell my girls to watch the things you noted, and to also look for practical sense--the arty-farty, can't do anything type gets old fast. One of the scenes that gets the most comment in ART OF APPRECIATION is when Matt fixes their screen door with no fuss, just because it needs done & he has time. Power tools are a strange aphrodisiac, apparently--lol

Bonnie said...

When I first started dating I wanted a rock and roller that was hot.
Now I look for kindness and responsibility.

Liz Blocker said...

This is a great, thoughtful post - and you're so right. I don't even know if I KNEW what I was looking for in a mate when I was young - I just wanted to be thrilled. Not so mature :) I'm pretty much done looking for mates, too, but before I found my current and life-long one, I was looking for someone entirely different. Someone kind, steady, and loving; someone who was self-aware, and emotionally available; someone who appreciated me and all I could offer. Yes, that IS a grown-ass mate :)

Alex said...

Above all I value patience.

Nicki Elson said...

Yay! I finally went in and reset so I can reply individually. :) *ahem* yes, so about that replying...

Yes, Alex, it certainly does sound like you struck romantic gold w/ your wonderful wife. It's good you knew what would make you happy all along.

Nicki Elson said...

Hehehe, yes, sometimes I guess we should be a little flexible in our requirements since Mr. Perfect Guy doesn't exist...just like Ms. Perfect.

Nicki Elson said...

You're welcome for the post & giveaway, Lindsey. Thanks for stopping by.

Glad you like that advice -- it's something I wish I would've payed more attention to when I was younger.

Nicki Elson said...

I'm loving this tour too! There's definitely a LOT to be said for the older male.

Nicki Elson said...

Trust is a great quality to look for -- it you don't have that, it's impossible to build a deeper relationship.

I'm so happy you enjoyed Divine Temptation. I LOVED your review. :)

Nicki Elson said...

haha - I totally get you on the arguing! It's no fun at all to be with someone who doesn't even care enough about the relationship to hash it out w/ you.

It's always heartbreaking to find out someone you cared about wasn't actually the person you thought he was. *sigh*

Nicki Elson said...

Yay for L.G. visiting me!

Smiling is important, and I still need funny in a guy...just not i-need-to-be-the-center-of-attention funny.

Nicki Elson said...

Yeah, I think controlling gets mistaken for caring too often. A disturbing trend to me is that so many readers of romance are gaga for the controlling alpha. Or maybe it's not a trend and it's always been that way, but I just don't get it.

Nicki Elson said...

That's an excellend addendum, Cherie. Thanks for coming by!

Nicki Elson said...

"not just to warm a girl up" hehe --- that's a very, very good thing to look for, Sarah. I'm glad you enjoyed the post. :)

Nicki Elson said...

It's a fine line, I think. A man who leads w/ my best interests in mind would be a dream---I'm just so not trusting that there's anyone out there who could do it without eventually turning into "controlling asshole" once I submitted, you know? But I'm probably too much of an alpha female.

Nicki Elson said...

Oh man, I went out with the most beautiful arty/edgy guy in college. He was introduced to me as the "Avon Guy" because in his dorm he'd go door to door selling drugs. Hrm, that should've been the first red flag, right? But did it deter me? No, no it did not.

I LOVE that screen door scene in AofA! It was the sweetest gesture done purely for her happiness. Practical is very good advice for your daughters---but if you go wrong, it doesn't hurt to at least live next door to Kind Mr. Practical. ;)

Nicki Elson said...

And kidness & responsibility + hot rock & roller is the perfect combo! Hehe, a girl can dream, right?

Nicki Elson said...

Thrilled is still nice though -- just got to have it combined w/ some other important qualities, like you list here. Self-aware is an especially great one for the long term. It's impossible to get deep and meaningful with someone who doesn't even know him/herself.

Nicki Elson said...

Patience is suuuuch a good one. That's one point I have to score in my real life grown-ass man's favor---he's been remarkably patient w/ all the crap he has to put with from me.

LD Masterson said...

When I first started dating, I don't remember wondering what kind of dad or grandpa he would be. Now I look at my husband of 45 years and it's one of the things I admire most about him.

Nicki Elson said...

Aww, that is so sweet -- good on you snagging a good papa & grandpapa.

Maurice Mitchell said...

Hilarious title for a blogfest Nicki. How a man treats his mother (and woman her father) is a key indicator. Plus, watch how they treat people they don't have to be nice to like waiters and maids.

Crystal Collier said...

Nice. It's easy to think you have it all figured out when you're young. I probably dated 100 to 150 different guys, rarely ever going on more than one date with any, and that's how I knew when I met my husband. He was the culmination of the gentleman, the joker, the deep and creative thinker, and my best friend. Still is. Oh, and he treated not just his mother, but his sisters like royalty. (Definitely a good gauge.)