As any writer (novice or otherwise) knows, characters are the integral part of any story. Basically, you can't have a story if you don't have a character. Whether it's one character or a hundred, they have to be there for the story to exist.
With that said, I imagine it's also a well-understood fact that sometimes a writer can have too many characters taking up space in the writer's brain. I believe this usually happens when the writer takes on more than one writing project and they're in love with each of the writing projects. Of course, I can truly only speak for myself and this is an issue I deal with a lot: Which character am I today?
I have a lot of writing projects on my plate. Some I've been playing with for years, others I've just suddenly had inspiration for and find myself writing feverishly for hours on those new inspirations. But it's always the same issue: Which character am I today?
I am currently working on two publishable projects (the other projects I consider more of my writing exercises in character interaction, plot development, or scene description). One project I've already spoken of: The L & L Mysteries. In those, I alternate between being Leyla Richards and Lucien Vintera, two completely different characters and I'm not just referring to them as being of the opposite sex of each other. Their personalities are completely different and there are days when I feel like Leyla and days when I feel like Lucien. And most of the time, I never know which day is which until I wake up in the morning and have had at least one cup of coffee. (Yeah, I'm a java freak!)
The other project is currently Untitled but has the makings of being at least four books, possibly more. The main character (as of right now) is a girl named Rosalita Martinez (Rosi to her mom and brother, but everyone else better call her Rosa or she gets a little prickly). The reason I say as of right now is because I intend to introduce a character later on that the reader will start to see from that character's perspective as well as continuing to read from Rosa's perspective. But right now, it's all Rosa and it's very challenging!
So, now I have Leyla, Lucien, and Rosa residing in my head, all vying for a chance to be the star of the day, so to speak. And each one has a unique personality that makes them perfect for the series they are associated with.
Which character am I today? The answer (for today only) is.....Rosa! So, I better get going before she gets impatient (she is 16, after all) and does something I don't really want her to do...at least not just yet. ;)