Readers love intriguing villains! Of course, the word “antagonist” is the colloquial word in the literary arena. I prefer the former term—it’s a tad more prestigious in my opinion. Readers need to root and cheer for the good guy/gal, a.k.a. the protagonist, but an awesome villain is necessary to bring out the best—or worst—in them. Villains should initially seem unstoppable, devoid of any three-dimensional traits. Somewhere down-the-line though, the cracks in the villain’s armor should begin to show, allowing his/her vulnerabilities to seep through them. This will give the protagonist through the eyes of the reader hope that all just may be well after-all in the end. Conjure up any and every villain that you hated—or loved—in books that you’ve read or movies that you’ve seen. What was it about them that stirred something in you? Swagger, extreme confidence, a sense of morbid-humor, certain mannerisms, an aura of mystery, recklessness? Sure…as much as readers want to root and cheer for the protagonist, they also want to see them being challenged by a villain they love to hate—or hate to love!