1. King Rangvald X1111

    King Rangvald X1111 New Member

    Jun 2, 2018
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    Where to Put the Introduction of a Villain

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by King Rangvald X1111, Sep 8, 2018.

    So, I'm currently still in the early chapters of my book, and I just hit the end of a chapter, and there is going to be a five year time skip between this and the next one (again, very early on), and I'm thinking I have two routes I can go for the next section/chapter, but I can't decide.

    Basically, the chapter I just finished ended on a cliffhanger, and pacing wise, it could be good to keep writing from that POV, especially considering it could help solidify the feel of a sudden transition between scenarios, like waking up from a nightmare, considering the time skip, but I also want to have a section introducing one of the pseudo-villains of the story in the beginning areas, as I want to dot sections from his POV throughout the story until the climax.

    Basically, the villain is a counterpart to another big character in the story, and has from uncanny similarities, that is hopefully gonna leave the reader questioning the trustworthiness of the character and confused as to what exactly is going on with the other POV, as most of the world is to various events concerning the villain. Needless to say, I'm at a block with this. I feel like this would be the perfect place to set the introduction, as the scene happens within the time skip, but I also don't want to break that sudden feeling of suspense and confusion that would continue out of the previous chapter.

    I guess another problem I'm having is whether or not to generally have the scenes in the villain's POV be actual chapters. I've read books, like E. K. Johnston's Ahsoka, that have had small sections throughout the book that aren't a part of the main story, but provide background or wider context or what have you, and serve as small separations in the various arcs of the story, but I don't know if I want to do that for these scenes.

    You guys have any advice?
    Siberian likes this.
  2. Siberian

    Siberian Member

    Jul 24, 2018
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    Pacing wise I think interrupting the protagonist's cliffhanger by prolonging the suspense even more could actually help you rather than hinder you. My favorite book series does this and as a reader it leaves me hanging on to the edge of my seat screaming, but also silently okay with it. Why? instant gratification isn't as satisfying as much as extended gratification is. Leaving us on edge by introducing a new POV is great so long as it doesn't outlast it's welcome.

    As far as your antagonist's POV I would recommend giving them their own chapter instead of a page break. Personally I like doing that better because sometimes the tidbit I want to insert is a couple pages long and I feel as if jumping from one POV, separated by a page break, to another's POV that spans several pages is annoying for readers to keep track of. That's just my preference however.
    rinnika likes this.
  3. rinnika

    rinnika Member

    Aug 28, 2018
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    A fictional universe of my own imagining
    I agree. It can be difficult to keep track of different POVs without a solid line between them, like a chapter. I've read a few books that separate POVs with page breaks and I ended up assuming the POV of a few paragraphs before realising I was completely wrong and having to reread about two pages. It was irritating for me as a reader because I felt as if I wasn't keeping up and that I was missing details. When chapters separate the POVs, it's more clear-cut and easy to refer back to. As a reader, it was much easier to follow and I rarely had to reread anything. I enjoyed it much more! So I'm the same as Siberian on this one :)
    Siberian likes this.
  4. Andrew Vord

    Andrew Vord New Member

    Sep 17, 2018
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    I introduced my villain in prologue. He starts off as just another character until you realize that the things he is doing cannot be for anything other than nefarious purposes. I leave it with just enough dark suspense that the reader is excited to see what he is planning, but that comes at a later chapter. My beta readers (coworkers) have been very responsive so I think this may work for me. Maybe it could work for you too.

    As an aside, one of my favorite series introduces a magnificent cast of characters, and if you don't already know the outcome (books are based on tabletop wargaming) then you get to book three and realize that you have been following the bad guys all along, and those good characters you've come to love get killed off. Wrecked my world when I first read them...
    rinnika and Simpson17866 like this.

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