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Antagonist

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The antagonist for my book is an adult.  Should I go in to depth of why the antagonist does what he/she does?  Or because the antagonist is an adult, I shouldn't focus on them?  For example, is it okay to write part of the book from their perspective?

Any advice would be appreciated.  Thanks.

Charles
#1 - October 10, 2019, 11:39 AM

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Their age doesn't really matter. More so, it's if their perspective enhances the story.

I think the story is usually better without the antagonists musings. Think HP. Was Voldemort's POV needed?

Dave
#2 - October 10, 2019, 04:10 PM

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To me, it's unlikely this would help a middle grade book, but make sure you know the reasons since they do effect how the character acts. There could even be hints. Voldemort's entire upbringing is mentioned in the later books, but it would've interrupted Harry's story earlier rather than enhancing it.  I think genre also comes into play here. Fantasy and realistic contemporary or historical are different beasts.
#3 - October 10, 2019, 05:55 PM
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Thanks for the great perspective.
#4 - October 11, 2019, 09:13 AM

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Charles, I find that very few writers do multiple viewpoints well. Some books to study, Splendors and Glooms by Laura Amy Schlitz; Tale of Despereux by Kate di Camillo; Zel by Donna Jo Napoli. These are all older books but the multiple viewpoints work. Also, these are all amazing authors to read and learn from.

Remember that often, less is more. Not knowing everything can add to the tension. Of course, the opposite is also true, when a reader knows something that a character doesn't, it can also intensifies suspense. If you are in the early stages of crafting your story, don't worry too much about these things--get the first draft down. Then, when you are revising, you can decide how you want to reveal the events as they unfold. Sometimes, it's the dog's viewpoint that's the best.
#5 - October 11, 2019, 12:46 PM
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