2011 RWA Nat’l Confrnce Workshop Tips – Mad, Bad, and Dangerous to Know

Today’s notes will cover the workshop Mad, Bad, and Dangerous to Know

Speaker: Tracy Wolff.

Tracy stated that handouts for this workshop would be available on her website tracywolff.com

• Villains are the heroes of their own stories – they believe that it is okay to do whatever they need to do to achieve their goal. Anyone who stands in their way is the villain to them.
• Bad boy heroes know the difference between right and wrong
• Bad boy/gothic heroes must be humanized – by the heroine, of course. He can’t relate to people and often is bad at social mores, but secretly he wants to belong. He’s critical and cynical.

There are three types of villain heroes: Promethean, Satanic, and Byronic

1. Promethean:

• Frankenstein
• Someone who overreaches – starts out with a good idea but pushes it too far
• Arrogant and convinced of his own superiority – until his downfall
• Batman, Ghostrider

2. Satanic:

• John Milton’s Paradise Lost – “He above the rest…”
• He can be as bad as you want him to be but there must be signs of remorse and self-loathing.
• He is fanatical, mysterious, the darkest of the villain heroes.

3. Byronic:

• Mad, bad, and dangerous to know
• Dark and brooding
• Often aristocratic, wealthy
• Moody, arrogant
• Gorgeous!
• Conflicted
• Imaginative

The villain hero must have that one thing that will make him attainable.

Make your own villain hero:

• Type:___________________
• Physical Description: ______________________________
• Dark Attributes: ________________________________
• Troubled Past: __________________________________
• Self Destructive Behavior:__________________________
• Tragic Flaw: ______________________________
• Evidence of Good Heart (in the end):______________________________


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