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Friday, March 21, 2014

Villains - Love'em or Leave'em?

Welcome back to our monthly Round Rhobin blog. I enjoy this one, especially checking out everyone else's opinions. I read them and go "Oh, that's a good point. I never thought of that."
Hopefully you do the same.
Our group topic this month is villains. Do you need them?

My answer yes. A good villain is necessary to any story in my opinion. And I'm not talking just murder and suspense stories and their villains. Even a sweet romance needs a villain. He, or she, could be the third person in a love triangle. Or a mean mother-in-law trying to break up a marriage. Or the shifty used car dealer.
They are the villains that play foil to the hero or heroine, or both. They are smart, clever or crafty and they challenge the hero or heroine's weak points or interfere with the hero/heroine's reaching their goal. The hero or heroine have to use and improve on their own skills to triumph over the villain. When the heroine triumphs over the vixen who is trying to steal the hero - we all cheer. When the heroine captures the serial killers - we all cheer.
Even in Women's Fiction there may be internal self doubts or conflicts. That's the internal villain. And when the woman overcomes them - we all cheer.
Whatever villain you look at they need to be smart, intelligent and a challenge to the hero/heroine. They help the main characters overcome the challenges and reach their goals.
What do you think? Do you need villains in your story?

Check out the rest of the Round Rhobin blogging group and see what they have to say.
You can go to http://rhobinleecourtright.com next.

Or you can check out any of these other participants.
Anne Graham writing as Anne Stenhouse at http://wp.me/31Isq
Aimee writing as A.J. Maguire at http://ajmaguire.wordpress.com/
Marci Baun  http://www.marcibaun.com/
Diane Bator at http://dbator.blogspot.ca
Fiona McGier at http://www.fionamcgier.com
Ginger Simpson at http://mizging.blogspot.com
Geeta Kakade at http://geetakakade.blogspot.com/
Connie Vines at http://connievines.blogspot.com/

17 comments:

  1. Hi Beverley, I'm a first time round robinner this morning and I'm really enjoying reading everyone's take on this subject. Like you, i need the actual embodiment and have enjoyed crafting my villains. Anne Stenhouse

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    1. Hi Anne,
      Welcome to the group. It's great and Rhobin picks interesting topics. I'm on my way to check out your post.

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  2. Oh Beverly! Enjoyed your comments! Haven't we all played the villain at some time in our lives?
    Thanks for posting.

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    1. Thanks Rhobin. And I'm guessing, yes, we all have a little villain in us.

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  3. Perhaps I'm looking through "Rose Colored Glasses" but it seems to me that LIFE would be SO MUCH BETTER without villains (I won't mention Washington D.C.). But of course villains are "out there" (hopefully not "in us") in profusion and it is up to the hero's in all of us to resist them in everyway possible...be it in real life or through the written word, which in itself can be instructive to others on HOW to resist!

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    1. While I like your rose colored glasses, I'm wondering if life wold be quite dull without a few little villains and would we have to work as hard to reach out goals. Of course I'm not touching politics here- no villains there would be great.

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  4. I totally agree with you about learning from the posts of others. I didn't see my own villains in that light until I started reading from the POV of others. I see we do like Snidely. :) That's how I pictured villains in my mind, and although I don't have anyone who ties women to train tracks, I use people like those I've met in my own lifetime. There is a little of each of us in our fiction.

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    1. Isn't it fun reading how others think of villains? No - probably no train tracks any more. Unfortunately the Snidely's seem to be crueler these days.

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  5. I love villains. They make the stories so much more interesting. We have our own villains (our internal voice who yells at us) and those people who will pull us down.

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    1. You're so right Melissa. And I agree about the people who pull us down - definitely villains.

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  6. Ooh, cartoon-envy again! You and Ginger! The first night my husband met me, he said he was mostly attracted to me because I quoted Rocky and Bullwinkle lines at him, along with lines from Dudley Doright. I've always liked those old cartoons that function on 2 levels: amusing "funny people" for little kids to laugh at, and ridiculous situations, pointed remarks and puns to keep the adults in the audience laughing also.

    Villains allow the heroine and hero to prove themselves. True love usually gets stronger when it has to fight obstacles to succeed.

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    1. Isn't it great when you can find a funny, evil picture that people can relate too? Ad I totally agree with you about true love becoming stronger with the struggles.

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  7. I must admit I enjoy writing the villain most of all! I love a good wicked villain in a story.

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    1. What! Not the hero? I think you're right though. If the villain is well-crafted he can be the more interesting character.

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  8. Hm... I still don't see some of my characters as villains because, technically, they aren't. For instance, Tammy's sister Cassandra in Tahitian Nights always spell trouble, but Cassandra never sets out to cause trouble. Her goal is to get her too serious sister out to have some fun. Something happens, and it's Tammy who ends up in the suds. None of it is really ever Cassandra's fault. I can't call her a villain. There are just situations. This particular tale is an erotic romantic comedy. It's just one hilarious incident after another.

    That being said, I have always enjoyed playing the villain. :D They are the most fun.

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    1. Interesting perspective and from what you've said I would say the sister is a villain. Is there anyone else in the story that might challenge Tammy, or block her path to her goal?
      Maybe in a comedy there isn't one? Anyone else got a thought here?

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  9. I find comedy often has a mistaken villain/ misguided villain. I enjoyed reading your blog.

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