1. kirsten1217

    kirsten1217 New Member

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    How To Make The Protagonist and Antagonist Meet

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by kirsten1217, Nov 6, 2017.

    Hi,
    I'm writing a crime fiction/mystery story and I need help making my characters meet. The protagonist and antagonist are both serial killers (one a psychopath and one maybe not so much). How can I get them to meet?
     
  2. Shenanigator

    Shenanigator Has the Vocabulary of a Well-Educated Sailor. Contributor

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    A bar.
    A party.
    A professional organization or conference if they have similar professions.
    A hospital (they both could have "failed" at killing their respective current victims and are in the ER waiting room waiting for results, but not the ones the doctors think they're hoping for).
    They're neighbors.
    An online forum while trolling for women.
    A gas station, and one of them notices something unusual about the other's vehicle, such as tires caked with mud when it hasn't been raining...
    In line at the post office while waiting to mail packages of their victims' belongings to antagonize their families...
    In line at the local wine shop while picking up a nice chianti...Oh, wait.

    Anyway, lots of possibilities!
     
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  3. newjerseyrunner

    newjerseyrunner Contributor Contributor

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    Henry Lee Lucas and Henry O'Toole met at a soup kitchen according to their wiki article.
     
  4. OurJud

    OurJud Contributor Contributor

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    Isn't this part and parcel of making up stories?

    There's no right or wrong way to have them meet, and it's your story so come up with a way to have them meet.

    I know telling someone to 'just do' the thing they've asked for help with, might seem like stupid advice but this isn't plot help, it's bordering on us writing your story for you.
     
  5. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    a harder question is how they find out each other are serial killers - its not something that comes up in polite conversation
     
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  6. Shenanigator

    Shenanigator Has the Vocabulary of a Well-Educated Sailor. Contributor

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    You mean there's not an annual convention of the International Association of Serial Killers? :D Now that would be an interesting story...
     
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  7. Seren

    Seren Writeaholic

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    I vote you make them meet here. ;):D
     
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  8. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    At the local hardware store looking for body disposal supplies. They bond a bit over how to remove blood from white laundry and invite each other to a barbeque before realizing they're in competition with each other.
     
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  9. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

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    kiss the girls - james patterson
     
  10. Mike43

    Mike43 Member

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    Being not so much a psychopath sounds about as possible as being a little bit pregnant :)
     
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  11. Simpson17866

    Simpson17866 Contributor Contributor

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    Actually, the Psychopathy Checklist rates people from 0-2 on 20 criteria ;) The average person is about 5/40, the average criminal is about 22/40, but you're not considered clinically Psychopathic unless you're at least 30/40.
     
  12. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    I took this online version and got a 17. So, hurray for being above average(?) Not sure if it's an official version of the questionnaire, but it seems like if someone realized they were being held to this checklist they could very easily pass themselves off as a normal person.
     
  13. Mike43

    Mike43 Member

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    Absolutely correct . . . and not . . . or perhaps maybe. Psychopathy is a huge and still wide open subject for research.

    The problem with using any of the accepted clinical checklists, and there are many of them, is that none of them are really in any agreement with each other. The UK also uses different values than the US. The need to be able to measure and neatly box-up and label clinical mental assessments is primarily (and somewhat sadly) based upon the requirements of legal entities rather than those involved in a clinical situation.

    My prior post was largely intended to be humourous although I really can't imagine that any serial killer is anything but an out and out psychopath however he/she might measure on any scale.

    Defense lawyers, on the other hand, are paid to win in court regardless of whether they believe their client to be guilty or not and psychological checklists have most assuredly been known to work exceedingly well for them. :)
     
  14. OurJud

    OurJud Contributor Contributor

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    I think there's probably a lot of ignorance where psychopacity (is that even a word?) is concerned. The word is synonymous with 'killer' in most people's mind, but of course this isn't the case.
     
  15. Azuresun

    Azuresun Senior Member

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    How about at anger management class? :)

    Neil Gaiman used that as the premise for a Sandman storyline once.
     
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  16. Mike43

    Mike43 Member

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    The rest of them are probably in banking, big business or big corporations. Or maybe politics :) After all they are notable for being highly manipulative and able to hide their true nature and intentions. If I might be allowed to utilize the catchphrase of the late Max Bygraves, I wanna tell you a story. Back in the 60's (no, the 1960's) I was employed in a clinical position in the Broadmoor Mental Hospital, a place I'm sure most people have heard of and one whose reputation precedes it. I played chess once with a man in a cell. He was immaculately groomed and dressed, his presentation and speech patterns were more akin to a member of parliament than would be expected of a mental patient serving a life sentence without possibility of parole or early release. During my entire time with him he was affable and convivial, albeit in what appeared to be a calm and naturally restrained manner. He trounced me at the chessboard, we chatted and I left his cell.

    Later I asked another employee why he had been incarcerated in Broadmoor. "Oh, yeah, he's an interesting one isn't he, that one. Why's he in 'ere . . . well, he got jealous of his chauffeur seeing another man, so he ate him."

    I didn't bother to ask whether or not he'd cooked him first, bad taste and all that, but meeting that patient along with a few others did show me just how easy it is for them to appear as normal people in every way. I did say only a few others because I quit my post after less than two weeks: I saw too many 'nurses' with scarred faces and potentially scarred minds to survive it for a longer period.

    They (psychopaths) may not all be killers but they do have the potential to be killers in one way or another, either directly or indirectly. Thoughts of my bank manager now spring to mind :) I wonder why :)

    Love psychopacity - if it isn't a word it should be - maybe hyphenated as psych-opacity? It really gets to the heart of the questionable possibility that minds can really be evaluated :)
     
  17. Vandor76

    Vandor76 Senior Member

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    The most realistic way is that they try to capture the same victim at the same time. In that case they are at the same place at the same time and their intentions will become apparent immediately.
     
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  18. Magical Writer

    Magical Writer Member

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    And if you really wanted to complicate matters you could make it the same person with multiple personalities, two of them being psychopaths. Gary Soneji with an extra personality thrown in for good measure.
     
  19. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

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    The two murderers could be the same person in competition and they in turn, are both separate personalities of the detective that's trying to catch them, all of them unaware of each other.
     
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  20. Mike43

    Mike43 Member

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    All too profound for me. I like simple.
     
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