Plot-Driven, or Character-Driven?

In the vein of NaNoWriMo, my husband and I were having a discussion about character development. His contention was, (and he told me he heard it somewhere else, so I guess it’s someone else’s contention) that if you want well-developed characters, who don’t just do what you, yourself would do when faced with whatever plot occurs, you must develop your characters first, then implement your plot around them. I said I’ve never done that, I’ve always been a plot-driven writer, and my characters are just tools to the plot. Now, it’s not beyond the pale to think that my writing could suck because of that, but I really had never considered doing it the other way. I think as an exercise, I should try to develop some interesting characters, and see where they take me.

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