Just a note:

This blog isn't meant to teach you anything, but I hope you'll have some fun reading it; I think I'll have fun writing it. I'll be posting bits of writing, like short stories and articles. Maybe some help for aspiring writers, a few tips and such. Also there will be journal entries and clips of conversation from the various characters in my books. So if you like the characters in my book, Cherished Preserver, stop by to get the inside scoop on their lives. Above all, enjoy!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Characters: Tip #2 The Villain

So, you think you're ready to write your new novel.  You've crafted the best of heros.  You've come up with the most spectacular man-vs-man conflict.  Your setting is in a local that everyone will love.  But what about the other "man" in the conflict?  What about your villain?

Sorry to burst your bubble, but your new great novel goes exactly nowhere without a well-crafted bad guy.  Just like your hero, the villain needs backstory.  Backstory, if you don't already know, is what has occurred in the life of your character before your novel's timeline takes place.  You may never even reveal any of these juicy tidbits to your reader, but all this info helps to sculpt and fashion the man.  It gives him reason for who and what he is.  Here's where it helps to know a little about psychology.  Bet you never thought you'd use anything you learned from that class, right?  But really, to craft a villain it helps. Because face it, to be so bad, this guy must have a physiological twitch.

Also, be prepared to pull from your dark side.  Poor yourself a cup of coffee, pull on your villain's boots and take a walk in them for a time.  You man not like what you see, but you'll take home some valuable information for your story.  It really is terrible when your bad guy is so bad that you have to close your eyes when you type out a scene. But if it really bothers you to have that awful of a fellow lurking inside you imagination, you can pretend that your villain is really a great guy playing the part of a wretched beast.  Like an actor.  Some of the worst characters in movies are played by the absolutely nicest people you ever met.

Truly frightening. . .  the female villain! To me, they are far more terrifying than a male villain. . .  I don't think I have the strength to say everything that needs to be said here.  What I do know is this, it goes against the natural make up of a woman to be a villain.  Women are natural to the art of nourishing, nurturing, comforting, patching up boo-boos, organizing.  All the things a villain is not!  Yes, a woman villain has something definitely wrong with her to be so bad.  Or perhaps something very bad has happened in her past. (again the backstory)

For more on villains, check out Hazel West's blog, Character Purgatory, listed in my favorite sights.  She'll probably have some posts soon on good craftsmanship of bad guys.

Thanks for reading.

1 comment:

  1. *shudder* Female villains. Scary,scary things they are. And yes, backstory for a villain is almost more important than one for your hero.
    Thanks for the plug, old chap! ;)