By Merrie Destefano
CONTEST IS CLOSED!
The WINNER is Crystal, who posted at 3:00 p.m. (just in case there were more than one). CONGRATULATIONS! Crystal, there are two ways you can get me your contact info. One: Friend me on Twitter, I'll friend you back, then you can DM me your address and e-mail. Or you could post your e-mail address in the comments section like this: name [at] address. I'll delete that comment after I get your info.
Thanks so much to everyone who read this post and commented. I loved reading all of your answers! I wish I could have given an ARC to all of you. Just an FYI, I ran everything through a randomizer program to find the winner.
Like most writers/artists, I had an extremely active imagination when I was growing up. Still do. I don’t see monsters behind every rock—I see monsters behind every monster. And of course, they’re all after me. When I’m writing, this works in my favor. In real life, not so much. For instance, the other kids always laughed when they watched Bugs Bunny. I mean, Bugs is the ultimate bad boy, a rebel bunny at heart, always looking for ways to bend or break the rules so he comes out on top. He’s great. Love that rabbit. But the Tasmanian Devil? Oh, baby, that guy gave me the creeps and kept me awake at night.
Because I thought he was real. I was convinced that he would come tearing through my backyard at any minute and demolish my house. And I wasn’t sure, but I thought that maybe, just maybe, he might be able to destroy people too. So, in my mind, all he had to do was make one hungry dash across my horizon and everything and everyone I loved would be gone.
Now that’s what I call a well-drawn character.
That’s also what makes great fiction—bad boys and bad guys that walk, talk, and act like they’re real. Surprisingly, when a bad boy breaks the rules, you want to cheer or give him a hug. But when a bad guy breaks the rules, you want to kick him in the groin, then push him off a cliff.
Bad boys buck against the system and show exactly why the system needs to change. Somewhere, early in the story, they either charm us or make us cry.
Bad guys buck against the system and suddenly we’re darned glad that the system exists; we’re hoping and praying that pretty soon that monster is either behind bars or sizzling on somebody’s backyard barbecue. Early in the story, the bad guy either makes us angry or makes our skin crawl, and we’re suddenly like the villagers in Frankenstein—carrying pitchforks and torches and looking for retribution.
Here are some of my favorite examples from movies:
Bad Boy: Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark
Bad Guy: Hannibal Lector in Silence of the Lambs
Bad Boy: Rhett Butler in Gone with the Wind
Bad Guy: Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem) in No Country For Old Men
Bad Boy: Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) in Blade Runner
Bad Guy: Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) in Die Hard
I’d love to hear who your favorite fictional bad boy or bad guy is and why! To get this bad boy party started, I’m giving away a signed, advance reader copy—hot off the press—of my debut novel, Afterlife: The Resurrection Chronicles.
To enter to win, please make a comment about your favorite bad boy or bad guy character. You can earn points by:
+1 Posting in the comments section
+1 Linking to this post on Twitter
+1 Linking to this post on Facebook
+1 Linking to the Supernatural Underground blog on your own blog/website
Just post the total number of points that you’ve earned in your comment. Winner to be announced in this post tomorrow. Contest ends tonight at midnight!