A little bit about writing your antagonist

What makes a great antagonist?

Your antagonist is your main bad character and can take almost any form, be it flesh-eating zombie, terrorist, shark, politician or even a flood, fire or an evil building.

The primary job of your antagonist is to give your protagonist their main purpose. The antagonist will either be trying to stop your protagonist from doing something or vice versa.

You may recognise some of these points from last weeks newsletter.

Firstly, your antagonist needs to have a good motivation. Why are they trying to do what they’re trying to do? Why do they hate/fear/envy your antagonist so much?

Much of this will become obvious when you write their backstory. Who are they? Where did they come from? What challenges did they have in their childhood?

Whatever your antagonist is trying to achieve, it should be unpleasant. World domination, slavery, stealing, closing down a children’s home, stealing superpowers, cutting down a forest for example. Make sure their objective is not nice so your reader knows they are the bad dudes.

Your antagonist doesn’t have to be purely evil, sometimes they have an element of good in them, anyone who has watched the original Star Wars trilogy will think of Darth Vader.

Give your antagonist a sidekick or a helper. Someone they can boss around and help them in their evil doings.

You will want your hero to ultimately overcome your antagonist. Your antagonist should be a challenging opponent to make the achievement special.

Happy writing everyone, I look forward to seeing your writing competition entries!

Remember, you can apply to take part in the competition here.

If you would like more information about publishing, then contact me here.