Vile Villains and Why We Love Them
One of the best things about writing fiction, especially romantic fiction, is creating characters. Getting inside their heads and figuring out what makes them tick. I so enjoy watching characters evolve as they appear on the page. And that includes creating those dastardly villains. The more evil and twisted they are, the more they fascinate me. What made them into the soulless, heartless and self-absorbed creatures they’ve become? Childhood trauma? A brutal event that changed them forever? Or were they born that way? The possibilities are endless and infinitely entertaining.
Since I write romantic suspense, I always have at least one villain or more in my books. One person, group or entity that my hero and heroine must fight against and defeat, thus ensuring, once again, that good triumphs over evil and thereby delivering them the happy ever after they so justly deserve. Whew! That’s a big responsibility. Which means my villain must be worthy of going to all that trouble.
One type of villain that always intrigues and frightens me more than any other is the one who sees absolutely nothing wrong with his or her devilishly wicked deeds. With this kind of villain, everything he or she does is totally justified. There’s no conscience, no comprehension, no guilt. Other than perhaps the fear of getting caught, the consequences of their actions are meaningless, dust in the wind. Making the evil person identifiable and understandable is often a difficult if not impossible task.
The villain in my new book, NO CHANCE, is like that. Filled with moral superiority, believing his station in life, his wealth and background, gives him the right to do evil things. He commits vile acts that would disgust him if done by other people. However, this man is so self absorbed in his delusions of superiority, he’s oblivious to the anguish he causes others.
People like that scare me…but they also fascinate me. However, I sincerely hope I never meet anyone like that except between the pages of a book.
Who is the vilest or meanest fictional villain you’ve read about? What made him so vile? Could you understand his motivation or was he completely beyond the bounds of comprehension? I'm giving away two copies of my new book to commenters today!