Here's a link to my blog post for Sunday, July 12 for the blog group of which I am a member, Writing Wranglers and Warriors:
As a reader and writer of detective fiction, one of the things I pay attention to and struggle with is the creation of a believable villain. As a reader, some of the best villains I remember have been complete sociopaths, with no remorse whatever. The comic book equivalent would be the Joker. Those can be entertaining, especially when they lose. An example from literature I’ve read recently was from James Lee Burke’s Light of the World. The killer was, based on some veiled backstory, messed up as a child. But, regardless of how he got there, Asa Surrette was a demon who gained joy from inflicting pain on others and had no mixed feelings about it. I did enjoy seeing him go down at the end of the book. And I was glad it was a painful death.
Read the rest here.