I know the correct term is antagonist, but villain sounds much more dastardly.
I’m a little over 12,000 words into “Dirigible Air Corps: Dreadnought” (I should be further, but I took a few days off for New Years), and I was struggling with it a little. The words just weren’t flowing. Even though I know where the story is supposed to end (although it may not end that way. If being a pantser has taught me anything, it’s that a story can take a complete turn at any given moment), but I was having difficulty moving the story along. But then I introduced one of the bad guys, and he revealed a little information about another bad guy.
Now, at this point I hadn’t come up with a name for my main antagonist. All I knew about him was that he was bad, and he planned to do bad things. I didn’t have any idea as to what those bad things were, or really why he was doing. Clearly this was bad planning on my part. How am I supposed to figure out motivations and what the main characters are trying to stop if the creator doesn’t even know? However, once I gave the main villain a name and that he has some sort of bad thing, the story seemed to unfold for me. Even as I write this ideas are flying through my head as to what the villain may have, and just what he plans to do with it.
Excuse me while I scribble down some notes!
Alright, got it. I certainly didn’t see that coming, but I think it will work out quite well. I don’t want to spoil anything for you guys and girls, but I assure you I think it will be excellent.
This incident has taught me that planning out the bad guys is just as important and planning out the good guys. Just because you don’t spend as much time with them doesn’t mean they aren’t out there doing dastardly deeds and trying to ruin the world, or whatever it is they may be doing.