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Monday, October 8, 2012

31 Days of Halloween Author Guest Post: Elizabeth Kolodziej

Villain is the new Hero

Have you noticed lately that the villain, or should we just simply say bad boy, is the one people are starting to vote for now? But who really is the villain and who really is the hero?

Normally the hero needs to accomplish a goal and has obstacles in front of them they must by-pass to reach their goal. Doesn’t this sound terribly similar to the bad guy in the story?

I remember being little and playing with comic book action figures (yes, I was/am a HUGE nerd) and my brother’s guy (Spawn) beat out my chick (Angel). I’m sitting there at like nine years old thinking “you can’t win, you’re the bad guy.” And my brother is of course like “I just did”. LoL

It’s a funny story, but that is something to keep in mind when writing/reading a novel. Who is really the bad guy and how much do you love/hate the villain?

Another point to make on top of this is: as a writer are you giving enough back-story and attention to your villains?

Yes, sometimes a villain might feel like something too simple to have a back-story. Sometimes that is the case. For instance, the movie Zombieland, it doesn’t give the zombies a back-story and they don’t need one. However, some stories really need to remember this.

I think of Kim Harrison and the Rachel Morgan series. I find it amazing that at first Trent is this huge villain and you are supposed to hate him. However, I don’t! lol. Eventually you find out more about him and realize why he isn’t such the bad guy after all and the reader finds himself or herself rooting for him over Rachel. Haha.

I don’t think this is a topic mentioned very much or enough. What do you think the antagonist normally is? It is normally the villain in a book. This might be something very simplistic to you, then again it might not be something you put enough thought into even though you know the point is there.

 Readers are starting to love the villains in the story and they need more attention paid to them. As authors we need to realize that every character in our books is important and needs attention and a back-story. It’s why doing character profiles are so important.

I know in my books for The Last Witch Series no one really knows if Vincent, my psychic vampire, is bad or good. However, in the third book it is all revealed and the reason for his actions is a big one. I gave him, what I think, is a great back-story and reason behind why he has done to Faith what he did. Some readers will still love him while others won’t. That is the beauty of the villain though!

You are supposed to love the hero, not always at first, but normally you should be rooting for them in the end. Obviously. The villain however can be more complex in a different kind of way. There are more twists and turns you can sometimes take them on.

Even more so is that sometimes the villain is the one to help the hero, or a bad guy turns good. So remember that your antagonist needs to be considered as much as your protagonist does.

What I will leave you with lastly is this thought. How interesting and fun is it that the hero and villain can be interchangeable? Don’t believe me? Think of the series Heroes. They did just that. So have fun with your characters and don’t leave the villain out of the mix!

Food for thought on a “villain” sort of week for me.

<3’s and fangs,
Liz ^_^

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