WIP · Writing

Crafting a credible antagonist

I hope everyone has had a fantastic Christmas with their nearest and dearest, and you’re all looking forward to a fresh start in 2017.

Let’s be honest, 2016 has been a bit rubbish. The EU referendum, no matter which side you were on, has left the country in a lot of uncertainty and turmoil. The American presidential election was just as tense, even for us Brits. And a lot of really awesome people have died so far this year. Bowie, Prince, Carrie Fisher, George Michael, Victoria Wood, Liz Smith, Terry Wogan, to name but a handful of the incredibly talented individuals we lost in 2016.

One of the worst days of the year for me was the day Alan Rickman died. I criedย for hours.

Moving forward, here’s hoping the next 12 months are 100% better than the last 12!

For me, 2017 is already looking up. I finally managed to snag tickets to Harry Potter and the Cursed Child for December next year, my husband bought us tickets to Aladdin in February as my Christmas present, I bought my Dad and I tickets to An Inspector Calls, and my best friend has bought us tickets for the tour of London film sets of Harry Potter! So the next year will be mostly spent in London living my best life.

Right then! Back to business.

 

Antagonist analysis.png

 

Let’s take a look at antagonists.

Here’s a bio of the antagonist of my current work in progress, The Fair Queen (serious spoiler warning!):-

Name: Auberon Crux

Species: Celeste (aether)

Occupation: Celeste King

Archetype: Ruler

History: Auberon and his sister, Neviah, were raised in isolation by cold and distant parents, the King and Queen of the Celeste Kingdom. They formed a very strong bond, spending every day together until they were teenagers.

When Neviah fell in love with a boy from another kingdom and ran away, Auberon was left distraught and alone. Neviah was a prophetess, and foresaw the coming of a child who would end the war and return the Fair Realm to peace. Being a gentle and romantic type, she was excited about this possibility. Auberon, being cruel and narcissistic, was not.

When Neviah fell pregnant and consequently died in childbirth, Auberon blamed the child. Heย had always disagreed with interbreeding between the different lines of Fair, believing each should keep to their own, and now he grew to despise all other Fair, especially half-breeds.

The child’s father, the crown prince of the Salamander Kingdom, had been warned by Neviah before her death that her brother would wish harm upon the child. In order to protect her, he hid the baby in the Human Realm, swapping her for a human baby girl.

Auberon spent years searching, but never managed to find the girl. Until weeks before her eighteenth birthday, when girls from Aria’s village start going missing…

 

That sounds like the premise for a whole book of its own, doesn’t it? Well, when I was doing research on writing convincing and engaging antagonists the advice that I came across said toย make the character the protagonist of their own story. To me, that means putting as much thought and effort into creating the antagonist’s backstory, motivations and characteristics as you do the protagonist.

This article by Laura Di Silverio on Writer’s Digest is brilliant for anyone looking for help fleshing out their antagonist.

So, that’s a little introduction to the main antagonist of my duology. What do you think? Is there anything you’d like to know about my big baddie?

If you have any tips for creating credible and terrifying villains in fiction please pop them in the comments! I’d love to get your advice.

 

Lyndsey

x

 

PS. Happy New Year!

 

Current word count:ย 61,925

Currently reading:

PaperbackThe Sleeping Prince by Melinda Salisbury

This is the sequel to The Sin Eater’s Daughter, which I adored. It’s taking a while to get into the story because we have a whole new protagonist this time around, but I can’t wait to see how it fits into the world Salisbury created in book one.

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