Comment by author Barbara Kyle:

"As you know, one of the hardest things for new writers to get their heads around is creating strong antagonists. Getting upset is what readers buy the book for! Even in a "cozy" mystery or a sweet romance there must be a force against whom the hero/heroine is pitted.

I always teach that the essence of a protagonist is not so much their "badness" but rather their power. Whether it's the power of a parent, a spouse, a magician or a general, it must be a power that they wield over the protagonist, because that is what tests the protagonist and therefore reveals their true nature. In "A Doll's House" Nora must face Torvald, who is in no way "evil" but who holds tremendous power over her. The choices she makes, right up to the climax when she walks out, reveal her true self."