June 22, 2011

Bad Guys part 2

Wow! This post is long over due.

In part one of my post on bad guys, we looked at some of the different kinds of bad guys. In part two of this "series" we will be looking at three things that make a good bad guy. (And yes, I know how contradictory that sounded.)

One - Do not forget to introduce your bad guy.

It would be so cool if all character could have name tags. Imagine it, Captain Hook enters with his beautifully handwritten name tag and everyone knows who it is. Not just bad guys but all characters.

(Using the example of Captain Hook and Peter Pan. Warning: not taken form the real book.)

One of the ways you could do that is to let someone who already knows who Captain Hook is speak.

Peter Pan gasped, "It's Captain Hook."

That was easy, and now everyone know who he is. Granted, if you want your bad guy to remain a secret for the time being, let it. But don't forget to introduce his when it comes time. Nothing is more annoying than reading a book that expects you to know all the characters.

Two - Every bad guy needs a purpose, fuel, a motive. Why is he doing this? We know that every bad guy has a motivation. Captain Hook wants to kill Peter Pan. Dr. Cuddles (from 'Muddle Earth', a wonderful book!) wants to be ruler of Muddle Earth. The Red Queen, well, just likes saying "Off with her head!"

It may seem like an unnecessary thing to have to figure out before you write. But I promise if you don't know why your bad guy is doing this, neither will your reader.

Three - Depending on the role you give your bad guy, it (being the role) should suit how you want your readers to look at him. You would probably take a different approach at introducing your bad guy if you wanted your readers to pity him, contrary to you wanting your readers to hate your bad guy with a vengeance. So take the time to think about how you want to portray your bad guy.

That is the end of my bad guys "series". I'm afraid if I said I'd do another one it would be awhile before you saw it. ☺

So what so you think makes a good bad guy?

No comments: