Character Development #1: The Antagonist

Developing your characters is an essential part of the writing process when creating a new story. While most people might think that flushing
out your protagonist is the first step in the process of creating your characters, for me, I find developing the antagonist a lot more essential
to the creative process. As I’ve talked about before, without a problem or central obstacle, there is no plot to the book. The same goes for
character development. Without an antagonist to facilitate that problem or obstacle, there would be no need to create a protagonist whatsoever.

An example I can give would be from my own book, I was a Teenage Killer. For those who haven’t read the book, beware of some spoilers. In
this novel, I created an evil teenage girl named Lisa Etron. I created her before I created the two heroes of the story, because she is the
central focus of the plot. She is a serial killer, born without empathy or regret, and who lives to torment and kill. She hides behind a
false identity as the girl next door, who spends her days cheer leading and dreaming of going to the prom with her supposed love. I created
her first because she is the driving force for the central obstacle, and because of her, two heroes are created to solve the problem that
becomes Lisa Etron.

The antagonist is just as important as the protagonist. When developing your characters, I recommend finding out who your antagonist is and
what their driving force is. Once you know this, then you can flush out your hero of the story, and from there the rest of the cast can
come into place. Remember, the central obstacle and the antagonist go hand in hand.

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