One fun thing about writing a novel is the ability to explore all kinds of personalities, lifestyles, and occupations. I've mentioned before that my current fictional WIP has been morphing and expanding. With that evolution, I found myself diving further into the history of the protagonist's parents. I mean, maybe other writers do it differently (probably do), but I find it difficult to flesh out my lead character without knowing her past and the ghosts that may be haunting her.
In addition, since I'm envisioning this story as the first in a series, I want to start as I mean to continue, and that, for me, means understanding the forces that drive the characters.
This first book is seated in the "father story" of the protagonist. I didn't intend it to be this way, it just happened as I moved deeper into the storyline. With that in mind, I'm not only reading some psychology books on fathers and daughters--Daughters of Saturn, Leaving My Father's House, The Wounded Woman--I'm also reading some books that focus upon the career I gave the lead's father, including this one called Accidental Archeologist.
The previous two novels I've written were not as complex as this one, and I am enjoying the challenge--a challenge that would have sunk me earlier on.
This coming week, my second semester at UA starts, but for now … on with story-building!