Antagonizing the Protagonist

John M. Floyd

One of my favorite quotes about writing came from author Margaret Lucke. She said, “You can’t protect your characters—the words protagonist and antagonist have ‘agony’ built in.” She was right. Especially about the protagonist. As fiction writers, one of our primary goals should be to heap a heavy load of misery onto the shoulders of our hero or heroine, and to do it as soon as possible.

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