Today, it’s my pleasure to have Sarah-Jane Lehoux here on the blog to talk about villains. Sarah-Jane is doing a blog tour for her Sevy trilogy. (Aren’t those covers gorgeous? Click to view at full size.) At the end of the post, I’ll tell you how you can enter to win the trilogy as e-books.
Ask any actor and they will tell you that they enjoy playing villains better than heroes. The part of the villain is often meatier, allowing more room for expression, for fun. For extreme exploration into the human condition.
And that’s exactly why I love writing villains. I love the range of emotions, I love the self-centeredness and they constant machinations of the mind. A good villain is just as rounded as the hero. A good villain thinks they ARE the hero.
One of my favourite quotes is from Mary Shelley: “No man chooses evil because it is evil; he only mistakes it for happiness, the good he seeks.”
Back in the days of silent pictures, it was enough to have a mustache-twirling villain in black whose sole purpose was to serve as a foil for the dashing, stalwart hero. Boring! Give me a complicated, brooding, depressed, vengeance-seeking character any day. I want baddies who truly believe that what they are doing is the right thing, that their happiness depends upon performing whatever evil it is that they are performing.
I want villains that I can almost sympathize with, that I can almost root for in a twisted sort of way. Just as I want heroes with flaws, I want villains with virtues, because those type of well-rounded characters are the ones who stay with you long after you’ve finished the book. They’re the kind that make you fantasize about all the different “what ifs” that would have given them a happier fate than that which they received.
In my most humble opinion, the villain can either make or break the entire story. And as a writer, I feel worse about killing off my favourite antagonists that I do about killing off my favourite protagonists.
But enough about my preferences, what do you think? Have you fallen in love with any literary baddies? Ever wanted to see them win out in the end? Come to the dark side. There may or may not be cookies, but there is a lot more fun!
Sarah-Jane Lehoux has always had a passion for storytelling. From grade school tales of cannibalistic ghosts, to teenaged conversations with God, to her rebellion against adulthood with fantasy kingdoms and fairy magic, she has attempted to share her love of the quirky and unconventional with her readers.
She currently resides in Southern Ontario with her husband and her horde of Machiavellian cats. In addition to her own writing, Sarah-Jane works as an editor and freelance cover artist.
Happily Ever After Doesn’t Come Without a Price
In the crumbling city of Eloria, there are two indisputable facts. First, everyone has a dream. Secret, seemingly unattainable, altogether irresistible, it is the kind of dream that aches and, at times, burns. For most, it will forever remain a teasing enigma, but there are those for whom dreams grow into obsession. Which brings us to the second indisputable fact: everyone has a price. Protestations of morality have little meaning when confronted with the all-consuming passion of the soul. Better judgment is pushed aside for the chance to obtain the unobtainable. The only question remaining is just how much a person is willing to sacrifice in order to get what they want.
Sevy has always been a quick study in the wicked ways of Eloria. Since childhood, she has eked out a living for herself with the help of her sticky fingers and her indomitable spirit. She has no qualms about taking what she desires, and when the unrequited love of her life is mysteriously murdered, Sevy will stop at nothing to get him back. Elvish black magic, necromancy and demonic pacts are of little consequence if it means she can once again have her beloved at her side. But is she willing to murder her only friend to get the job done? Is there a line that even this selfish, self-proclaimed bitch is not prepared to cross?
Shades of War
There is More Than One Road to Redemption
Sometimes the past can’t be forgotten. Sometimes the truth refuses to be buried. And sometimes the dead won’t stay dead.
It began as a simple request: Journey to the Northern Jungles and bring a wayward son back to the safety of his farm and family before the racial tension that is building between humans and dark elves erupts into civil war. But life is never simple for Sevy, and she soon finds herself entangled in a bloody battle of good versus evil, love versus hate.
Old friends and enemies reunite, familial bonds are broken, and loyalty is tested. And in the midst of the steamy, sultry jungles, the ghosts of a serial killer’s victims come out to play. Sevy, as petulant and irascible as ever, must overcome her personal demons in order to expose a madman and bring peace back to the kingdom. But just how much of her sanity must she sacrifice to help her friends? And how can she save anyone when she can’t even save her own soul?
Never Trust a Liar, especially when they’re telling the truth.
Starting over isn’t easy, especially when the world isn’t ready for you to change. Sevy, thief turned assassin turned mercenary, isn’t having any fun adjusting to a normal, law-abiding life. Luckily for her, an old partner in crime arrives with an irresistible proposition: a getaway to a tropical island, an adventure of a lifetime, and an amazing friendship ready to blossom into an even more amazing romance.
Things are looking up for Sevy. That is, until a pack of maniacal fairies with a taste for human flesh arrive on the scene.
Now she must unravel a web of magical intrigue hidden behind the outwardly idyllic atmosphere of the islands of Belakarta. Nothing is as it seems, and no one can be trusted. Trapped under the spell of a handsome and mysterious stranger, Sevy must fight fairies and tricksters to regain her freedom.
Or spend an eternity as a sorcerer’s plaything.
Erin here again. Appetite well and truly whetted? Interested in owning the series for yourself? Comment here. Your entry number will be based on order of commenting. Next Friday at noon (Eastern Time), I’ll use Random.org to choose a winner.
Or if you just can’t wait, you can buy the e-books from Amazon: Thief Shades of War Masquerade
Sounds like fun. 😀 Count me in.
I absolutely love well-rounded baddies. My favorite stories are often the ones that either show the slow downward spiral of one person, choice by choice, into a villain, or the ones that take a villain and just as carefully redeem him/her. I think the redeeming one is more difficult to pull off.
And the dark side doesn’t have cookies…they have brownies. They’re the more evil of baked goods.
Good thoughts! Thanks for commenting.
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