If you don’t fill in every detail of a character’s background before you start writing the story, those empty spaces may later become filled with details you didn’t expect at all.
This is one of the most enjoyable things about writing fiction.
This is one of the most frightening things about writing fiction.
This is why I won’t be using detailed character creation lists in the future, either.
My clone gets a lot of his ideas for stories while driving and listening to music. This past Sunday, while on his way home from Clovis (a town about 20 miles from here), he started thinking about how a certain character in his SF novels just didn’t seem to have sufficient motivation for things he’d done recently. Well… Turns out the character was keeping secrets from his author. (I’m shocked! Just imagine a fictional person not telling their author everything from the very start. No author ever has to ask a figment of their own imagination stuff like, “Excuse me, but what do you intend to do with all those firearms?” *shakes head* Um. Yeah, that was a bit of sarcasm there, among other things.) The character was also keeping secrets from one or two other major characters, and that doesn’t surprise me, either. Why should fictional people be any different from the rest of us? ‘Sides, I do love dramatic irony…