Anne Aylor’s second session was on characterization. Some bullet points:
Give your characters free reign.
You need to show people with their flaws.
Notebook your characters: what do they like to eat, their key experiences, moments of epiphany.
Write short stories about your characters.
Show don’t tell.
The main cast of characters shouldn’t be too big (3 or 4 max).
We also talked about the importance of naming your characters well. I’m still in the early stages of planning my second novel, but one character in it will be a thirty something male police detective. Off the top of my head I came up with Jack Deegan, but after discussing it with the group I changed it to Andy Deegan. You heard it here first.