Friday, May 4, 2007

A Tribute to Villains

I mentioned in an earlier blog that B. J. Daniels, Joanna Wayne and I gave a workshop entitled “Killers to Die For” at the RT Conference. As we were preparing for our presentation, we surprised ourselves by how differently we three view our villains. Which shouldn’t have surprised us, considering we have very different writing styles.

B. J. likes to write what she calls a ‘soft’ villain, someone who does bad things because he or she has been backed into a corner. Someone who is, more often than not, personally connected to the hero and/or heroine.

Joanna prefers the psychological villain, the kind who likes to get inside his victims’ heads and mess with their minds. This person usually gets off on the game as much as he does the kill.

I’m into the deranged, scary, psycho villain. The predator without a conscience. These whack jobs scare me the most because you can’t protect yourself from them. If you fall into their specific criteria, they’ll find you.

So tell us what kind of villain you prefer and who your all-time favorite bad guys are. You can have more than one.

And now for my tribute to villains:


  1. Actually, I like villians with a heart. Take Raz Agul from Batman Begins. His group wants to rid the world of injustice and if that means destroying a society and start from scratch, he's willing to do that. Makes sense, right?

    I guess I'd like to think there's a reason for a villian's behavior or else the alternative is chaos. BLEH!

    Have a great weekend!

    Pat White

  2. My favorite type of villains are the ones where you can understand why they're doing what they're doing.

  3. I agree Stacia and Pat. To me, motivation is everything, even in the whack jobs I like to write about. I don't want just a hazy, tortured background, either. I want specifics.