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Creating the perfect villian
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Creating the perfect villain was probably the worst title I could have chosen for this article as there is no such thing as a perfect villain and if there was, he or she would be the worst villain ever!
Villains often make or break a story. A real villain is both loved and loathed. If they are too evil, they become boring and the reader stops caring about them and if they are not evil enough then they are probably not a villain.

When I created Edward Wellington, the villain in LET ME OUT, I didn’t want him to be a cold-blooded, heartless, emotionless, evil man – I wanted him to be human and realistic.
Why is this important? I hear you ask, well, it’s because I wanted him to be relatable. I wanted the reader to be able to get into his mind and understand his logic – this is not to say I wanted anyone to agree with it, that would be worrying as he is a little psychotic. Rather, I wanted my readers to appreciate his understanding of the world, regardless of how twisted it was. And I think it’s safe to say it is somewhat twisted.

In my opinion, what makes villains like Edward Wellington so terrifying is they exist in real life. They appear like normal people you see them on the street – the guy delivering your mail, the taxi driver, the teacher… it could be anyone. In fact, the more normal they seem, the scarier they are. Being unpredictable and narcissistic helps too.

I am obsessed with exploring people’s personalities, and in discovering why people do what they do, I realised people are capable of pretty much anything – both incredibly good and extremely bad. This is what makes our stories so damn interesting. I prefer meeting villains who have a reason behind their decisions. A compelling journey of their circumstances that became the driving force for their choices.

Villains must care about something other than just their ambition to wreak havoc. When I wrote my emotional thriller, The Refugee, the protagonist, although technically the “good guy” made some awful choices; choices, I am sure many of my readers would agree, transformed him from the good guy to the bad guy. Whereas the antagonist was bad to his very core, yet there was a compassionate side to him that surfaced occasionally. This makes characters real and relatable as there is a fine line that separates good from evil.

I wanted Edward to be a villain who was more frightening when he did nothing or when he was engaging in dialogue than when he was carrying out an atrocious act. I feel some characters like Hannibal Hector and Norman Bates, are far creepier when you trying to decipher their mindset as opposed to when they are doing something horrible.

A villain has achieved being villainous when he/she puts you on edge even when they are doing absolutely nothing.

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