What is it that makes villains so attractive to write? Is it that the gloves can come off and you can have your evildoers cross boundaries a hero never would? Is it our fascination with the dark underside of humanity that draws us in? Is it that we want to save villains from themselves? Peter FitzSimons, Lenny Bartulin and Lucy Hughes-Hallet discuss with literary editor of The Australian Stephen Romei why villains are so much fun to write, in fiction and biography.
Lenny Bartulin (Australian)
Lenny Bartulin is the author of the Jack Susko trilogy and a published poet. Born and bred in Hobart, he is currently living in the Blue Mountains. lennybartulin.blogspot.com
Lucy Hughes-Hallett is an award-winning cultural historian, biographer and critic. The Pike has won the Samuel Johnson Prize and it was chosen as Book of the Year by more critics than any other book in 2013. Lucy’s previous books are Heroes: A History of Hero Worship and Cleopatra: Histories, Dreams, and Distortions . She began her career as a feature writer on Vogue, after having won the Vogue Talent Contest, and subsequently won the Catherine Pakenham Award for young female journalists. She was the Evening Standard’s television critic for five years and she has written on books or theatre for most of the leading British broadsheet newspapers. She has judged a number of literary prizes, including the Costa Children’s Book Award, and, most recently, the Duff Cooper Award. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.
Peter FitzSimons is a journalist with The Sydney Morning Herald and Sun-Herald. He is also a regular TV commentator, a former radio presenter (very successfully, with Mike Carlton on Radio 2UE) and is also a former national representative rugby union player. Peter is Australia's biggest-selling non-fiction author of the last ten years and is the author of over 20 books - including Tobruk, Kokoda, Batavia, Mawson and the Ice Men of the Heroic Age and biographies of Nancy Wake‚ Kim Beazley‚ Nick Farr-Jones‚ Les Darcy, Steve Waugh and John Eales. His latest bestseller is Ned Kelly: The Story of Australia's Most Notorious Legend. Peter was named a Member of the Order of Australia for service to literature as a biographer, sports journalist and commentator, and to the community through contributions to conservation, disability care, social welfare and sporting organisations. peterfitzsimons.com.au