Tag Archives: villain

Writer blog fun

Writing Blog FunThe other day, my writer’s group talked about blogging for writers. Authors, or would-be authors, should consider this medium as a means for marketing their writing. However, it also provides a wonderful means to exercise your writing (or show off your mad skillz) to the world.

Some writers ask me “But what would I write about?” My response is often “You’re a writer- MAKE S#!& UP!” So here are a few blogs to illustrate my point;

 

garThe Evil Overlord Handbook is by Gar the Pitiless. The author writes as an evil character, but unfortunately, doesn’t write much now. His posts are incredibly entertaining and well worth the read.

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The British, modern day series of Sherlock also boasts not just Sherlock’s Blog, but also of Dr. Watson.

From the show, the characters talk about their blogs, which include the posts they mention. Even the side character, Molly Hooper, has a blog.

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I once wrote a blog (no longer published) from the viewpoint of a housewife by day, secret agent at night. I even created a villain, Kang Fang of the Nepal Mafia who sought to take over the world. Since I didn’t gain too many readers, I ended up not writing posts in favor of other projects. But it was fun.

A fellow writer who enjoyed my fan fiction wrote me and volunteered to play the role of Kang Fang. We even explored writing a shared story, taking turns with scenes between two agents. It was hilarious fun for us.

Even if you don’t wish to explore the fictional world. a non-fiction author can utilize their blog to write about the topic of their books. This helps build trust for readers.

For example, if you write about gardening, you might blog about gardening techniques, or share tips. If you write about health, you could post about medical conditions, new discoveries in health, or share personal stories about health on your blog.

The important takeaway is that a blog provides you a valuable and fun tool to gain readership through your writing skills. Show off your writing skills and let your imagination run wild.

 

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Revisiting Old Topics

alienlandscapeThere comes a time in all Blogger’s adventures where they start to feel that they’ve covered everything. I kind of feel that way now, or maybe I’m in my winter hibernation mode. All I want to do is curl up and sleep until spring.

But then, I considered that I could just as easily revisit the same topics covered before but go further into depth, share my own experiences on those topics, or mix things up and take an opposing view than I had before- just to be different.

Story telling can do the same.

Take the villain’s point of view. I find villains very entertaining to write, from their perspective, due to thinking outside the box.  The challenge is finding their motivation and justifying that motivation that might otherwise work against the ‘norm’.

spacephp copyPick another time. If you write a story that takes place before or after the main novel, you expand your series. Prequels and sequels offer fans more history of the characters.

Explore new settings. If you work with one setting, consider exploring a setting in the same ‘world’ but different place. A new planet, undiscovered land, or any other setting offers new challenges for the same characters.

Turn things around. Pick plot, setting, characters, and even conflicts to see what new story ideas sprout anew.

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The Antagonist Is Not a Bad Guy

breaktime2I remember in high school, my teacher explained how the antagonist is the bad guy in the story. Now, as an adult, and as writer, I realize that is an over-simplified and even misguided definition of the term.

The word ‘antagonist’ means opponent, or work against. The antagonist simply takes the role against the protagonist.

He or she could be the enemy of the protagonist, but not necessarily evil. In fact, the antagonist of a novel doesn’t need to be human. It’s a person, place, or thing that opposes the main character. This could be anything from weather (The Perfect Storm) to a creature (Alien or Jaws), or a thing (cancer or other disease, or series of events).

The antagonist stands in the way of the protagonist’s goals. They oppose them, stand in their way, work against them, for whatever reason. They should have their own motivations, however justified.

I found through real life experiences the difficult people provide the best inspiration for antagonists in my stories. More importantly, how they behave and why they behave. Motivation and understanding that motivation is key to a good antagonist.

I remember once listening to a Buddhist monk speak on the topic of Dealing With Difficult People. It led me to the idea that difficult people are generally working from a darker place, a broken place. What fuels them could be anger, resentment, passions, fear, or even misguided views on the situation. But this offered me this epiphany on how to write characters, to give them these flaws in which to work with, and even potentially overcome.

What are your thoughts on this; evil or just antagonizing? Post in comments.

 

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Writer musings: Torturing your characters

A good story offers a conflict your character must overcome. Aside from the initial problem they have to deal with, they often need to endure a personal conflict they also juggling through the story arc. Many stories include a number of problems to ‘raise the stakes’, add tension, and give reason for the character to grow beyond their comfort zone.

“Tragedy should be utilized as a source of strength.” (Tibetan proverb)  Pain is also the best teacher, and with that thought, you put your characters through hell so they can make it to the other side older and wiser.

A character needs to learn and grow. Good stories tell a story of conflict. Great stories tell stories of growth, stating something about the human condition, and pushing through the mundane stuff to find the hero underneath.

Pain is a teacher. Through the hardest experiences, we often learn the most about who we are, what we’re capable of, and strips us of everything to the very core of our being. Not every character will need such hardships, but ask yourself if causing them more problems, more conflicts, more pain serves to build them as a stronger character.

Prompt: Consider your characters, both the protagonist, and antagonist, as well as sidekicks, and consider what hardships they could face to overcome whatever weakness or fears they might have.

Think of your own fears, and what you may endure to find the courage to overcome.

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