Things I learned about dating from

My husband’s best friend came to stay with us last week. He is single, good looking and smart. He is actively looking for love and wants to be a dad. So when he was scrolling through his Match.Com profile, I couldn’t resist butting in. After all I am a professional romance writer. I saw it as my job to help out. Things I learned:

1. Men look at the photos first! I think we all knew this, but it’s really really true. Ladies, if you’re serious about snagging a man via online dating, invest in good photos. Don’t use the camera phone upload. No Glamour Shots- that would be too obvious, but you want to look your best. Have a good head shot that shows your face and another body shot that shows an honest depiction of your body type. MEN ARE LOOKING.

I was surprised at how many women had lousy photos that showed nothing of their personality. In fact many women only had 4 photos, and two of those were of their dog! Dog photos are great- just be in the photo with your pet.

2. Don’t write a manuscript. Keep your paragraph about you to exactly that. ONE PARAGRAPH! The men skim it looking for bullet points. (Family, hiking, yoga, zest for life etc…) So many women had pages of unparagraphed text. We stopped reading.

3. I hestitate to write this last thing, because it probably does depend on the man. Let the men contact you. Let them be the hunter. There are probably men who appreciate getting contacted, but I’m thinking a lot of them prefer to do the contacting. I could be WAAAAAY off base about this. WOuld love to hear more opinions.

So on this Valentine’s Day, if you’re looking for love, let love come find you. But you can help it along by presenting a great marketing package of yourself. Make yourself look fun and engaging, someone people will want to meet.

14 thoughts on “Things I learned about dating from

  1. Jane Sevier says:

    The workings of a man’s mind are always fascinating, whether one is in quest of landing one or not. Thank you, Lynne!

  2. Lynne says:

    I totally agree, Jane. It was fascinating to see how and why certain women got ruled out. (Too old to have kids, too geographically far, too odd)

  3. Diana Quincy says:

    Thanks for this view into the minds of men. Very interesting! I’m a believer in dating websites. My niece met her true love online, even though he lived across the country. They’re now happily married!

    1. Lynne says:

      Diane, I love hearing these success stories of online dating. It’s great that the internet can bring people together who previously would not have met.

  4. Gail Barrett says:

    I wonder how many men apply those same principles to themselves? Did you look at your friend’s profile to see what he listed about himself?

    By the way, one of my sons met his wife on and is quite happily married:))))

    1. Lynne says:

      LOL- We did go through updating his profile. He has a head shot and a body shot- with a dog. I of course edited his paragraph, changing POV and tightened the passive language! Always a writer. Glad worked for your son!

  5. David says:

    Don’t have a man in your pictures. It doesn’t matter if that’s your brother… He’s still a man in your dating profile.

    What do women look at in men’s profiles if not the picture first?

    1. Lynne says:

      David- that’s a great point about not having another man in your profile pics. And you’re right, women look at the photos first too. I think it’s more about the packaging than if the person looks “hot”. If they look like they lead an active, engaged friendly life that someone would want to be a part of, that’s a big turn-on.

  6. Great post! All I know is that I’m glad I’m not out there right now. It all so complicated . . .

    1. Lynne says:

      Robin, I know! Happy to have met my hubby when I was 18. THough if I had to go on a first date, I would be clueless. Do you kiss? Who Pays? Do you have sex? I don’t know first date etiquette.

  7. Keely says:

    So I’m a day late in reading this, but interesting stuff! Diane Rheam had a show about online dating services and matchmakers – very appropos! I like the “keep it short” advice. Wise words!

    1. Lynne says:

      Keely, Thanks for stopping by. Wish I’d heard the Diane Rheam show.

  8. AnonymousOnlineDater says:

    Match is terrific. Agree wholeheartedly about the lines and lines of unindented text, though I can process a profile that’s more than a paragraph.

    Minor quibbles:

    All the profiles do sound the same after a while. Everyone likes to travel and hates drama — duh, give me more than that to work with please.

    The next woman I encounter who could be interested in a shorter man will be the first. And actually, I can handle that. It’s the women who are 5’3″ but want a man 5’10” or taller that make me crazy.

    Disagree, Lynne, about let the men contact you. I understand that burden falls predominately to my gender, but it would be nice to be chased every once in a while. Funny, how the culture has undergone this seismic shift in re. gender roles these last 50 years…and yet the mating rituals still hold.

    1. Lynne says:

      Yay Anonymous for wanting to be chased. Thanks for sharing that. Romance novels often perpetuate the male as chaser role. Sure, the female might decide she wants a certain man so she dresses up to catch his attention, but then it’s up to the guy to do the chasing. I’m not sure I can think of a romance novel that has the girl as the chaser. Anyone? Anyone? Would love to read it.

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