I have a delightful guest post for you today from author Karina Kantas discussing great villians and why we love them!
Let's turn it over to Karina.
My name is Karina Kantas and I am a genreholic. I can’t help myself. A new genre comes along and I HAVE to include it in my writing CV. In the past twenty years I have written in the genres of MC thriller, romance, horror, comedy, thriller, Science fiction, fantasy, historical romance, YA, paranormal, NA supernatural. In all these stories and novels, in all these genres, one thing is evident. They all have and need a VILLIAN!
Yes, you can have a bad man that the reader has no love for and hates. But not all villains are evil or have mental problems and are psychotics. Most were forced or fell into the life. My bad girls and boys in the MC thriller series, the OUTLAW they were either bought into a life of crime or they felt they were forced into it by an unjust society.
There is a way to feel empathy to even the evilest of man and that is to remember that he was a human baby, with no murderous tendencies – well most were. A girl, maybe not an innocent for long, but there was a time she was innocent and had no idea what the future held. Go back to some of the best villains in fiction Voldermort (Harry Potter) was once a young boy with mixed up feelings and no friends. The ring wraiths (Lord of the Rings) were once Kings who were entrusted with a power they could not control. In Cassandra Claire’s hit Mortal Instruments the villain was a highly regarded Shaddow Hunter.
You see the best villains cause the readers to feel some sort of empathy. Now in my fantasy, Illusional Reality, I have two villains. A father and son duo. And although the reader thinks that the father, Darthorn, is evil it turns out the son is worse. But there is also a clever twist and you soon wonder what is evil and who is the real villain.
When I first get an idea for a story. I don’t have a part for a villain worked out. That comes later and very naturally. See it’s the conflict that is needed in the story that makes the reader care for and cheer on the main character. But there are always two sides, the good and the bad. Black needs white, yin needs yang and the good guy needs a villain. Now the villain doesn’t have to be a killer or a mental psycho, it could be a bully, or a next door neighbour that scares of the cat from next door. However, in most novels the villain is larger than life! They have to be as they are competing against the good guy, the main character of the story.
I like my readers to be able to relate to my bad boys and men. They don’t have to like them or care about them but they must be able to understand why they do what they do. It’s the empathy connection that makes the reader love to hate the villain.
I was born in the Midlands UK. I grew up in a poor, rough area of town and used my writing to escape an unsettling reality. Delving deep into my characters' minds and hearts, I give my readers thought provoking and sometimes dark story-lines. Although I specialize in thrillers, I write in all genres and have just released a romantic fantasy.
You will now find me on the island of Corfu with my imagination and a pen in my hand.
Thanks so much for joining us today, Karina!
Would you like to learn more about Karina? Visit her website