Question: I'm having a lot of trouble creating a villain to fit my fantasy novel. I have a protagonist and a main idea but no bad guy to interrupt the doings of my other characters. I can't do much without a villain...any tips for using what I have so far to make my antagonist?Answer:
Have you worked out what the Story Goal is? What is the protagonist attempting to achieve? The villain will be someone who wants to prevent the goal from being achieved, either because he or she has a vested interest in the status quo or because his plans involve the opposite occurring. He may be wanting the Consequence to occur instead.
Some examples: In The Lord of the Rings
, the goal is to destroy the evil ring to make sure no one can possess it. So the antagonist is the entity who wants to possess it most of all. In Harry Potter
the goal is to avenge the death of James and Lily Potter by bringing about the just death of their murderer. So the villain is the murderer, who coincidentally wants more than anything to live forever. In the Bartimaeus
trilogy, the goal is to restore the balance of power by ending the enslavement of demons by magicians and returning political power to the commoners. The villains are the magicians who have the most to lose if the goal is achieved
Try creating a list of possible characters who might benefit if your protagonist fails or who would want most of all to stop him. Eventually, you will find one that really appeals to you.