There was a great question over at the eHarlequin forums on what makes a "hot, alpha hero." Who is YOUR favorite hot, alpha hero?
What makes a hot alpha male hero for me isn't so much how he looks (although tall & built works nicely :)) but how he acts, especially towards heroine & what he's overcome--it's character arc that makes the hero hot (or not) for me. I think the best way for writers to learn what makes a hot male character is read widely, especially within your target line or subgenre. What makes a hot presents hero is different from what makes a hot superromance or blaze hero. Going to Dear Author or Romantic Times or another review site and looking for your chosen line and "A" reviews can help you see what works.
Here's some of my personal favorite heroes--I love the "wounded warrior" hero who is either physically or emotionally scarred and overcoming past tragedy. I love the hero who has a big character arc to achieve his HEA, but who treats the heroine as special the entire novel--we know that she's different for him long before he does. Hot Alpha Hero for me doesn't have to equal Tall, Dark, and Built like a movie star. Done right he can be horribly scarred (Elizabeth Hoyt's To Beguile a Beast), Blonde and kind of caveman looking (Suzanne Brockmann's Over the Edge), shorter than the heroine (Lorelei James's Chasin' Eight), or a computer nerd (Suzanne Brockmann's Out of Control (of course, hero being a SEAL doesn't hurt here :)) or completely unaware that he's a hot alpha hero (Tessa Dare's Twice Tempted by a Rogue).
Hot Alpha Hero written by a Guy--Don't Look Down by Bob Mayer and Jennifer Crusie
Hot Alpha Romantic Suspense Heroes who pretty much personify "Hot Alpha Male:" Pamela Clare's Naked Edge and Breaking Point both have smoking hot heroes who earn their hot status by being protective of the heroine. Also, smoking hot.
Hot Alpha Contemporary Single Title Hero--Victoria Dahl's Talk Me Down and Lori Foster's Say No to Joe
Hot Historical Alpha Heroes--Tess Dare's One Dance with a Duke, Julia Quinn's When He Was Wicked, Elizabeth Hoyt's Notorious Pleasures
Hot Alpha Historical/ Paranormal Hero written in away that Male AND Female readers love them: Zoe Archer's Blades of the Rose series.
Hot Alpha Paranormal Heroes--Kresley Cole. Every single hero :)
Hot Alpha Super Romance Hero: Terry McLaughlin's Make Believe Cowboy--Movie Star Hero, jaded with big character arc
Hot Alpha Blaze Heroes--Anything by Alison Kent or Kathleen O'Reilly. Smokin' hot.
Hot Alpha Erotica Heroes done Right--Sasha White and Lorelei James OWN the Alpha hero. James's Cowgirl Up & Ride could be a text book on the Alpha Cowboy :)