Friday, January 6, 2012

I'll get you, my pretty!

Let's continue our discussion about writing a strong plot, thanks to the Writers Digest article in the previous post. Today's topic: REVENGE.

Right away, we have to make certain that our protagonist is likeable and sympathetic or readers simply won't care about the character or what s/he is trying to accomplish. Most of the time, our protagonist is innocent of any wrongdoing. Afterall, we want to write about nice folks, don't we? So, whatever is wrong wasn't his fault.

But what if your main character is a villain, or you decide to write your book (or portions of it) from the villain's point of view, as I did in Just North of Luck? This worked well for me because I wanted to show readers that even though this man was mean and cold-hearted killer, he was horrendously abused as a child. I had to grab some sympathy from readers so they understood why this man, a highly intelligent and talented man, came unglued and took out all the crap Life dealt him on innocent people in a close-knit community. His methodical plan for revenge ended in his demise, of course, at the hands of my protagonist, but the point is REVENGE drove the plot from his perspective.

Have you ever written from a villain's point-of-view, or had a protagonist who got caught up in revenge rather than justice? Please comment for a chance to win a free copy of Just North of Luck.

1 comment:

J D Webb said...

Hi, Susan. Yes revenge is a strong tool for us writers of mystery. I have one coming out soon in L&L Dreamspell's Revenge II anthology called The Drifter. About a former Special Ops guy whose wife and child are killed in an auto accident by three men fleeing police after a robbery. They get off scot free on a legal technicality and he tracks them down.
It was fun writing to let emotions run wild.