Selective laser melting (SLM) is one of the emerging and promising advanced manufacturing techniques, providing an ideal platform to manufacture components with no geometric constraints. Developing a comprehensive theoretical model of the coupled electromagnetic and thermodynamic processes involved in the SLM is of great importance since it can provide significant improvements in the printing processes by revealing the optimal parametric space related to applied laser power, scan velocity, powder material and layer thickness and porosity. In this paper we present a self-consistent model that seamlessly merges the electromagnetic energy released in the powders and the concurrent thermodynamics of the particles temperature rise and onset of melting. The numerical simulations are compared with developed analytical model providing insight into the dynamics between lasers facilitated Joule heating and the radiation mitigated rise in temperature. These results provide a guideline toward improved efficiency of the energy release and optimization of the SLM process scan rates.