How do you feel about multiple Points of View in novels? Do you like just the hero and heroine? Hero, heroine and villain? Scenes from every important character in the story?
The reason I ask: I just received comments from one of my critique partners for the latest chapter in my current work in progress and she suggested that I write a few scenes from the villain’s Point of View.
Villains, real and imagined, have been portrayed in print and film throughout history. Some were so evil, we dare not think of them. Some not so much. There was even a movie called The Villain, a western comedy with Kirk Douglas, Arnold Schwartzenegger and Ann-Margret…it was a hoot! That villain was funny!
I have written from the villain’s POV before and enjoyed it. In Touch the Flame, the villain was a man obsessed with possessing a fabulous diamond that was both cursed and blessed…and he didn’t care who got in his way. In A Treasure Worth Keeping, I wrote not from the villain’s POV, but from his henchman—Porkchop—a poor, misguided chap who reminded me of Smee from Peter Pan. He was terrified of his captain and ended up falling in love with the heroine….but I digress.
A villain can be a great character, the perfect foil for what the hero and heroine are going through, perhaps even the reason they are thrown together in the first place. He can be portrayed in so many ways and if done right, we may even feel empathy for him (or her)…like Porkchop.
But I hesitate. In my current work in progress, my villain is off-stage. We never see him commit a crime. We don’t know why he does what he does, either, but we suspect and we wonder. We see and feel the aftermath of the crime in the emotions the hero and heroine experience…and we know, in the end, justice will prevail so do I want to write scenes from this villain’s point of view and give him a chance to explain why he is the way he is?
At this point, I’m not sure. What would you do? Is the villain’s point of view important to you?
As always, happy reading!
Great topic! I tend to be the kind of person who prefers villains to heroes. My favorite type of character is a villain turned hero. He's the villain in one book, you get into his head and learn the reasons behind his actions, then he becomes a hero/antihero in his own story. I love multi-faceted villains and look forward both as a reader and a writer to getting to know them. I like to think of a complex character who opposes the main character as an antagonist instead of a villain. Turning a villain into a hero doesn't work for all characters, but even the ones who won't ever have a chance for redemption are usually interesting and it's fun to get to know them.ReplyDelete
Thanks, Kate! I agree, it is fun to get to know a villain (what drives them to be who/what they are) and I have read stories where the anti-hero becomes the hero (and liked them very much). I've also written from the villain's POV and enjoyed the process, but there are some villains who scare the living daylights out of me (like this one)! Thanks for your comment....have a great day!ReplyDelete