Can I make my main character an antagonist?

by sajid

Question: I'm trying to write a story about a psycho killer who thinks himself a vampire. He's the main character.

My story goal is to let him kill and escape.Is that possible?

Answer: If you are writing the story from the point of view of the killer, that would technically be a happy ending. The challenge you would have would be how such an outcome would fit with the morality of the reader. Do you really want to make such a character into a hero? Do you want your reader to cheer at the end, or throw away the book in disgust? Or do you want to make some kind of social commentary, such that the reader can see the killer's escape as a tragedy for the world?

If you are writing from the point of view of someone else, perhaps a policeman, this would probably be a tragedy or tragi-comedy. A tragi-comedy would result if the killer escaped but the point-of-view character ends up in happier state. A tragedy would result if the killer escapes and the POV character sees this as a personal failure.

Another possibility: write from the killer's POV, but let him be punished for his crimes and immoral acts, thus creating a tragedy.

Yet another possibility: write from the killer's POV but have him be redeemed in the end, thus creating a happy ending that will sit well with the reader.

As you can see, you have a lot of options here. You need to decide what message you want to convey and let that determine your decision.

Best of luck.

Click here to post comments

Join in and submit your own question/topic! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Character Invite.

 Step-by-Step Novel Planning Workbook

NEW! Make Money Writing Nonfiction Articles

"I've read more than fifty books on writing, writing novels, etc., but your website has the most useful and practical guidance. Now that I understand how a novel is structured, I will rewrite mine, confident that it will be a more interesting novel." - Lloyd Edwards

"Thanks to your "Create a Plot Outline in 8 Easy Steps," I was able to take a story that I simply just fooled around with and went willy nilly all over, into a clearly defined, intriguing battle where two characters fight to keep their relationship intact, and try to find a balance in control of themselves and their lives. Thanks to you, I'm not ashamed of the poor organization of my writing." - Nommanic Ragus

"I am so glad I found your site. It has helped me in so many ways, and has given me more confidence about myself and my work. Thank you for making this valuable resource, for me and my fellow writers. Perhaps you'll hear about me someday...I'll owe it to you." - Ruth, Milton, U.S.A.

"I never knew what to do with all the characters in my head, but since discovering Dramatica I am writing again in my spare time. Thank you for making this available. Yes, it is a bit complex, and it does take time, but I love it because it works." - Colin Shoeman

"I came across your website by chance. It is a plethora of knowledge, written in a simplistic way to help aspiring writers. I truly appreciate all of the information you have provided to help me successfully (relative term) write my novel. Thank you very much!" - Leo T. Rollins

"I can honestly say that this is the first website that is really helpful. You manage to answer complex questions in relatively short articles and with really intelligent answers. Thank you for taking the time to write these articles and sharing them so generously." - Chrystelle Nash

"...had no idea that a simple click would give me such a wealth of valuable information. The site not only offered extremely clear and helpful instructions but was a very enjoyable read as well. The education from your wonderful site has made me a better writer and your words have inspired me to get back to work on my novel. I wish to give you a heartfelt thanks for How to Write a Book Now, sir." -- Mike Chiero