Steps to a Story: Where there’s smoke…

Smoke and fire are ubiquitous in a fantasy world.  Fire is necessary for cooking and heating, and a little smoke in the sky is not unexpected when approaching a village.

A giant cloud of smoke, on the other hand, signals trouble.  This is how we are moving Matthew and friends from simple traveling to something more active – a scout sees a huge billow of smoke and soldiers race to the rescue.

The smoke is the hint that something is going on; now it’s time to start dropping hints to our main character that there is bigger trouble afoot.  Enter the antagonist!

I don’t want to reveal this character too fully right away, so our first glimpses of him are going to be minimal: a comment here, an unusual reaction there.  And yes, I know it is cliché for a bad guy to be a guy, but in this case, it works.  I have a female antagonist for Butterflies 2, if you are concerned that I save that role for men only.

 Even though I want to simply drop hints, I have to know what hints to drop in order to set up the character for later.  Thus, my current train of thought – developing the bad guy.  Matthew is not completely fleshed out, but some of that grows out of the story, and we need his counterpoint character as well.   So while I am still working on finishing up the first section (and I can still use your help!) my brain gets to work on the next step, and start finding motivation for the things I know the antagonist wants to accomplish.

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