This Antagonist's Interview is courtesy of www.writermag.com's February 2011 Cover Story: A Pyramid Approach to Novel-Writing. Hopefully, it can help some of my fellow #NANO writers as they prepare for next month's 50K word venture.
"Antagonists are typically underwritten characters. Who wants to spend time with the bad guy? I do, because a well-written, believable and sympathetic antagonist spells the difference between a toss-away novel and a cinematic novel. Imagine you are your antagonist's biographer. Interview him or her, creating a character page from the answers.
- What's your name? Nickname?
- Anyone ever tell you that you look like someone famous?
- Of all your qualities, which are you most proud of? Where do you think you acquired this talent?
- What do people seem to like the least about you? How does it make you feel?
- Which habit of yours would you most like to change?
- If someone looked in your bathroom garbage right now, what would they find?
- What scent do you enjoy the most and what does it remind you of?
- If you could go back in time and change one day of your life, what day would it be and why?
- What three goals do you want to accomplish int he next year? What challenges do you have to overcome to reach them?
- Whom do you love most in this world and why?
- What scares you?
I'd love to see some bits of your antagonists in the comments below, so please share some if you like!
I may be a little absent (even more than usual) through November, as I too am participating in NANO, but be sure to keep an eye out for some editing advice posts in early December, as well as a few query helper giveaways just in time for the contests coming up in December, January, and February.
Stay warm and write on!