After a year or more of writing for my third novel, I’m still trying to sort out the place and character of the main female character. I have had a core idea of who she is, (based on someone that I once knew), but the practicalities of putting her into the novel are presenting difficulties. This, despite attempting a 60,000 word character study before I even started. Should she be a manager in a similar post to the male character, or a key mover in deciding budget cuts that will affect his life? Should she be a ballsy but vulnerable artist, or a hypochondriac, like him? The method I’m finding most useful at the moment is to do a pros and cons list for each option. And oddly, it seems to clarify things. One box soon begins to fill up way beyond the others eg advantages of staying as a b but v character, or being a manager in a similar post. The question is still open, but it has helped.