on Live Write Thrive:
This material ran on my blog four years ago, but it’s worth sharing again!
Most fiction writers know that character is at the heart of a story. Whether you are writing short or long fiction, you need terrific characters.
But what’s in a character? And how much do you need to know about your characters before you start writing?
The depth of detail you develop for your characters may vary. It stands to reason that you aren’t going to put as much work into crafting minor characters as you would major ones. And the most important character—your protagonist—should have the most depth.
How deep should you go? That’s a good question. Some writers spend months working on a character: her looks, her history, her family, her issues. But often the details a writer works up are trivial details.