How To Write Anti-Heroes

When writers consider how to write anti-heroes, they should bear in mind that it is not oh so dissimilar to creating more traditional heroes or central protagonists. In my blog posts on how to create compelling main characters, I highlighted that writers should:

  1. Give the main character a goal and a reason for it;

  2. Decide the main character’s endpoint;

  3. Decide the main character’s beginning;

  4. Create a story-arc for the main character;

  5. Give the main character a blend of positive and negative traits;

  6. Give the main character a flaw;

  7. Make the main character internally conflicted;

  8. Decide the age, gender and status of the main character; and

  9. Give the main character a backstory.

All of these remain true for the anti-hero with one exception. Which one though is it? To find out, and in order for us to discuss the examples that go with it, fill in the form below.

In the full version of the blog post, we look at Gordon Gecko (played by Michael Douglas) and what makes him an anti-hero. Can you guess why he is an anti-hero?

Unlike my posts on how to to write more traditional heroes, my post on how to write anti-heroes is exclusively for subscribers. To receive it and to see how to write a different kind of fascinating character, fill in the form below.


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P.E. Gilbert

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