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We need to draw on the unconscious, memory, the imagination and the Muse until our characters quicken, assume clear form and, with hope, begin to act of their own accord.
They have a greater set of emotions and experiences that can make them seem realistic, convincing and intriguing, as long as you—the writer—know what these characterizations are.
If someone were to ask a random question about your character, possibly not even directly relevant to the story, you should know the answer as if the question was about you.
Secrets inform us of what our characters have to lose, and why.
Drawing on the example of Blanche Dubois, her secret is that through drink and illicit sexual liaisons, she has become so emotionally and physically dissipated she could not hold on to the family home.
Most problems in real life are not random events that happen by chance to random people; instead they are trials that people go through because of who they are and situations they have faced in the past.
When creating a character, you are not just imagining the person that lives through a rising action, a crisis, climax, conclusion, and then a falling action.
This is because desire intrinsically creates conflict, the primordial goo in which character is formed.
Take, for example one of the most memorable characters in American literature—Blanche Dubois, from Tennessee Williams’ .
We all know people who are both shy and rude, cruel but funny, bigoted but protective.
This complexity, which seems to particularly manifest itself during times of stress or conflict, is what can make a person inherently unpredictable, setting the stage for the kind of surprising behavior that can keep readers enthralled, wondering what might happen next.