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  1. LinnRandom's Avatar
    Reading: Wking on Black Waters
    TBR: 100+
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    #1

    xreading He's a Dirty Rotten Scoundrels-Villains!

    In most mysteries and suspense novels, there is the villain.

    In Snow White, you know right off it’s the Wicked Witch; maybe it was the hat or perhaps because she looked, sounded and acted with malicious intent.

    Today, however, villains and readers have evolved and you need to take as much care with your villain as you do your hero and heroine.

    Whether your villain is a serial killer, the one-time murderer who killed out of passion or a thief who robs the rich; this is one character that needs to have multi-layers.

    To the world, he or she may appear likeable. He is the last person you would suspect of committing evil but inside his dark heart, he is motivated to first commit the crime and then cover up his sinister activities.

    Why does your villain commit the crime can be as important as how? What is his or her motivation?

    Was it a crime of opportunity, wrong place, and wrong time or was the victim selected?

    How is your villain tied to the victim? Someone he or she knew and therefore murdered with a purpose?

    I hate, I hate, I hate the villain who pops out the end of the novel and the reader has no clue as to who this person is. It’s simply bad form to have the bad guy jump out at the end of the book to surprise your reader and to conveniently explain away the crime.

    In Lights, I left so many clues as to who the villain was and why he was motivated to commit the crimes throughout the book; I thought readers would be screaming at me that I gave away the villain’s identity too early in the book. And, to my surprise to this day, no one guessed who my villain was before his big reveal. But I played fair, the why he turned so evil was mentioned in the book, several times.

    By bringing in my villain in early on, the readers had a satisfying aha moment. Your villain may make his or her appearance early in your novel or later but bring him or her in sooner rather than later. Have him filter in and out in scenes of your novel and will be discussing in the class where to bury the clues later.

    As a character in your novel, your villain should be multidimensional; he or she should be able to move in and around society; he will have a job. He or she blends. Real criminals do blend into society. He doesn’t have to be perfect or maybe he’s a bit too perfect, it’s always your choice.

    He can be a background character or a principal player and give him the tools to cover up his crime. Your villain is naturally motivated to misdirect your heroes/heroines to better cover up and hide his identity.

    So let’s work in The Plot Book, and build a better villain.

    The Plot Book
    Villain
    Name______________________________________________ _____________
    Nickname__________________________________________ ______________
    Killer Name (given by Media/Law Enforcement) _________________________________________
    Height____________________________________________ _______________
    Weight____________________________________________ _______________
    Hair Style_____________________________________________ ____________
    Married/Single____________________________________________ _________
    Children: __________________________________________________ ________
    Childhood Background: __________________________________________________ _____
    Education: __________________________________________________ ______
    Occupation________________________________________ ________________
    Best Trait_____________________________________________ ____________
    What do people think of him/her?______________________________________
    Worse Failings__________________________________________ ___________
    Habits: __________________________________________________ __________
    Biggest Regret____________________________________________ _________
    Attitudes toward Opposite Sex? _______________________________________
    Desires: __________________________________________________ __________
    What does he/she want? ______________________________________________
    Motivation: __________________________________________________ _______
    What will he/she do to achieve it? ______________________________________

    Even though my villain had an early role in, Lights, Camera. Murder, to help introduce his evil side;which was hidden from the hero and heroine; I offered the following insights of his intent. You will find his thoughts at the end of several chapters. In this scene the reader sees his first evil appearance.


    Lights, Camera. MURDER! On location/on the set…………..

    A figure stood in the shadows of the old hotel, watching the SUV carrying Jon Maddux and Sage McCall drive away.

    Half hidden by the side of the building, standing among overgrown shrubbery, no one had seen the figure and if they had, they would have hardly taken note. Why should they?

    No one would ever suspect this was just the beginning.

    This had worked out so much better than planned. Now that, the Hollywood Press corps had been mobilized, the eyes of the nation would be glued to this small tiny town. Perfect.

    The heady sense of victory was imminent. All that was left to do was to get rid of pretty Sage McCall. They would hardly be prepared for what would come next.

    LIGHTS, CAMERA, MURDER, Author Linn Random

    Rating: 5 CUPS OF COFFEE
    “Ms. Random has delivered a story full of suspense. I absolutely enjoyed how this story was written. It kept me on the edge of my seat until the end. I also liked these characters: Sage, who is full of sass and just the right amount of courage, and Jon, who is the epitome of a hard-nosed, tough cop that demands things go his way-and if they do not? Well, find a place to hide while he roars. These two characters are the perfect complement to each other and a totally intriguing story.

    I thoroughly enjoyed the characters in this book and the way it was written. It kept me on the edge of my seat waiting for the next twist or turn.

    Thank you very much for writing such a gripping story.”
    Sheryl
    Reviewer for Karen Find Out About New Books
    Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance

    Thanks everyone! See you online at Coffeetime! Linn
    For More Information on Linn Random or Lights, Camera. Murder! You are invited to visit www.LinnRandom.com Books on sale exclusively at Coffeetime Romance.
    Linn Random
    www.LinnRandom.com

    Top Selling Author - Mystery, Suspense, Intrigue
    Pirates in Paradise, Lights, Camera. Murder!
    Your Cheatin Hearts, Haunted Hearts,
    Driving Book Sales - E-Books, Kindle, Print
    Visit www.LinnRandom.com
  2. Telly423's Avatar
    Reading: Rex Stout's The Golden Spiders
    Just Finished Reading: Swimming Lessons by Dahlia DeWinters
    TBR: 6
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    Telly423 is offline
    #2

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    This is really helping me focus. I used to do this years ago and stopped. When I did that I lost a lot of depth to my characters. I haven't developed my villain yet, but he does make an appearance early in the manuscript.
  3. Telly423's Avatar
    Reading: Rex Stout's The Golden Spiders
    Just Finished Reading: Swimming Lessons by Dahlia DeWinters
    TBR: 6
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    Telly423 is offline
    #3

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    I have a dilemma. I have a short story, I recently submitted, and did the no-no you mentioned above. waiting until the end to fully reveal my villain. Now I need to go back and incorporate more of my bad guys into the plot but not sure how to do it. I have a scene with from the villain's POV, but then really nothing else. I didn't want to give too much because it is so short and with only 5 characters the reader would be able guess who.
    Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.
  4. LinnRandom's Avatar
    Reading: Wking on Black Waters
    TBR: 100+
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    LinnRandom is offline
    #4

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    Telly, I'd have to know a bit more about your book before offering any advice. Feel free to contact me at LinnRandom@gmail.com
    Linn Random
    www.LinnRandom.com

    Top Selling Author - Mystery, Suspense, Intrigue
    Pirates in Paradise, Lights, Camera. Murder!
    Your Cheatin Hearts, Haunted Hearts,
    Driving Book Sales - E-Books, Kindle, Print
    Visit www.LinnRandom.com

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