Several years ago I listened to a talk given by Lew Hunter, author of Screenwriting 434. (Great takeaway: No such thing as failures, they are deposits in your valuable inventory.)
Prior to speaking, Lew got to see part of a screenplay some audience members bravely acted out. I leaned forward, wondering if his critique of their work would match mine. But his response to them at the end, whatever they brought up, was that they had not defined their characters. We did not learn many secrets that night, but we learned the #1 priority.
Nothing can be worked on until you have believable, living characters.
“I turn to characters to learn more about my story.” Elizabeth George
Mystery novelist Elizabeth George completes a long bio for each character, we’ll look at some aspects of it tomorrow.