What makes a good killer? What makes him/her effective? Killers always get caught or subdued, otherwise our population numbers would be in the negative... So what makes the good ones so great? How do they avoid detection while create fear and confusion?
Well if you listen to Dr. Phil you'll find the basic serial killer profile stuff, nothing they don't run you through at the beginning of Silence of the Lambs but I think killers are a lot more adept and sadistic these days... or at least they're more post-modern.
**Beware Los Spoilers**
1. Get Thee Some Followers
They could be friends, victims or family members but when you eventually get knocked out do you want your fancy kill-shed made from excess Ikea parts to go to waste? I thought not.
If they're your friends make sure they've got a strong constitution. Remember, you're the criminal mastermind. If they deviate then who's going to look stupid? You. If they're family members they will get emotionally involved, so make sure they know who they are after and then go for it like their life depended on it. Love isn't retroactive. And former victims, these are probably the most ideal. Especially if they're rocking the Stockholm Syndrome.
Using Friends: 2-3 sequels
Using Family: 4-5 sequels (possibilty of rebooting the franchise in 10-15 years)
Using Victims: 7 (Bonus Points if 1 or more is in 3D)
2. Pick Up Some Stella Adler Books To Incorporate Any Additional Personalities You Don't Already Have
Multiple personalities is a great way to gain your victim's trust and to evade persecution if you get caught. You can go even further and get some needy person to fall for you and have a fake family. I mean, of all the bad things you do manipulating someone into loving you is probably the least of your (or their) problems.
3. Never Doubt Thyself.
Did Hannibal Lecter doubt himself? No. That's why he got a full series based on his character while Buffalo Bill who did most of the killing in Silence of Lambs got taken down. While wearing night-vision goggles. Not a good look.
4. Ambiguity and Doubt are Different Things
IS Patrick Bateman guilty? Does it matter? He certainly thought he killed those people. Just because someone doesn't have the firmest grasp on reality doesn't mean they aren't a valid killer. In fact, ambiguity will lead to increased debate and popularity if only in university seminar rooms.
5. Ignore Rhyme and Reason
Rhyme and reason leads to patterns which leads to being caught. Take emotions out of the killing. You can still involve a nifty theme to your killings but make sure your subjects are nice and random.
6. Time Travel
It works! Ish.
7. When all else fails ... Become a Supernatural Entity.
You can milk an entire franchise out of that then ride the convention circuit to a time-share in Florida.