By Susan G. Haws
When I read and just love a book I try to think why I get sucked into those characters and worlds. I am discovering several things that help me accept the characters and their situation. One of these is distinctive secondary and antagonistic characters.
As a reader not only do I identify with the main character I appreciate the individuality of the other characters that populate the novel. Just as in real life, some side characters are more important, such as: family, friends and enemies so the reader knows them well and other characters are more of acquaintances and others only cross paths with the main character.
The Harry Potter novels exemplify distinctive secondary characters. The reader gets to know core people surrounding Harry such as Ron, Hermione, Draco, and Snape in depth. But a reader of the series could easily discuss the character growth of Percy Weasley, the fears and strengths of Remus Lupin, the change in behavior of Lucius and Narcissa Malfoy over the series, or Neville Longbottom as a hero. Even Mundungus Fletcher can be picked out of a line up.
How do you develop your secondary and smaller characters into individuals?