I saw a great photo affixed to my hairdresser’s license today. The picture showed an orange tabby kitten looking in a mirror that reflected back the face of a lion. It occurred to me that this could be a great question to ask when you are flushing out a character for a novel. For example, how does your protagonist see themselves—as an innocent victim or a fierce fighter ready to take on the world? Does this self-image vary between interactions with different people? Does his or her personality change during the course of the novel?
After you have answered the above questions, dig a little deeper:
How would the character’s parent or spouse describe your protagonist?
More importantly, how do you, the writer, see your protagonist? Have you captured that personification on the page?