September 17, 2020-Today we’re talking about antagonists and what characteristics they tend to have. As writers, it’s essential to know what makes our characters who they are, what makes them tick, and why they do what they do/don’t do. Antagonists, in my opinion, are far more fascinating than Protagonists, becasue I always wonder what pushed them over the edge and caused them to become a villain.
First, let’s start by defining what an antagonist is: An antagonist is a character that stands in the way of the main character getting what they want. The Antagonist is referred to as the villain as mentioned above. Some notable antagonists are:
- Darth Vader
- Cruella DeVille
- Hans Gruber
- The Joker
- And my personal favourite, Bane.
Antagonists have particular personality traits and can often be described as having personality disorders (narcissists). Some traits include:
- A sense of superiority and an inflated sense of ego
- Loyal to their cause and a willingness to do whatever it takes to complete their mission no matter the cost, a risk-taker mentality
- Intelligent and strong
- Diabolical, calculated, methodical in some cases
- Adapts to changing situations easily
- A distorted sense of justice, the world, and self
Keep these traits and characteristics in mind when writing your villains. Villains are people too, perhaps just more interesting and complex if you ask me!
February 4, 2019– A lot of aspiring authors get confused when asked by publishers who their novel is for. It can be tricky to differentiate between middle-grade novels and novels for young adults, so I thought that we would explore that topic today and clear things up.
- For ages 8-12
- Length is 30,000 to 50,000 words
- No profanity, graphic violence, or sexuality. Romance in middle-grade novels is limited to first kiss or crush.
- Age of protagonist is 10-13 (ten for the younger MG and 13 for the older readers)
- Focus on friends, family, and the immediate world of the main character and their relationship to it. The characters react to what happens to them with zero to minimal self-reflection.
- Voice is usually third person.
- For ages 13-18
- Length is 50,000 to 70,000 words
- Profanity, graphic violence, romance, and sexuality (except for eroticism) are all allowed thought NOT required/necessary.
- Age of protagonist is 14-18 BUT NOT yet in college/university. Young adult protagonists can be 14-15 years old for the younger reader, with safer content aimed at the middle school crowd. For older and edgier young adult protagonists, the can be up to 18.
- Focus on how they fit into the world and what their place is beyond their friends and family. They spend more time discovering who they are and reflecting on the choices they make. They are analytical with the meaning of things.
- Voice is usually first person.
This is a quick and easy way to know which group your novel fits into. Happy writing! X LLB