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Yep in my head they are pretty genetic beings with more spoken word than form.  My characters lack details and I have to use software to get a better handle on them.  I mock-up their clothes, hair, facial features and overall appearance.  Mind you, this helps a ton.

I worry it isn’t enough.  I’m not sure what details a character needs to bring them off the page.  To help them read real.

All the background questions in the world are not going to help me with this either.  It won’t help reading how to develop characters either.  You would think it would.  I’ve looked.  Gotten more sites about questionnaires, basic standard forms and d&d sites.   Yeah, have to love punching in character develop or sheet and you get a game.

I like using extremes in examples at times.  It can be easier to gasp the concept.  With that in mind, Jimmy Joe Bob is in the house!  He’s poking at the laptop screen from the inside and wondering who I am.  I think my overwhelming large presence freaks him out.

Back to the point.

Jimmy Joe Bob wears loose clothes.  Overalls.  Rips in them as they are handy me downs.  He has scruffy hair.  He doesn’t bathe much.  He carries a gun everywhere.  It’s like a stuff toy to him.  He has a baby face.  He’s young.  Probably the youngest.

I can get the overall sense of him but details beyond this start to bug me.  Like anything more specific like his eyes, nose, mouth become not so easy to form in sentence.  I don’t know if I need those kinds of details.  Do I need the reader to know Jimmy Joe Bob has wide eyes and thin lips?  Or is the reader happy with the overall details of the character?

Would love some feedback on this subject.  How much detail do you go into?   If it’s a lead character would you describe their eyes, nose, lips?   If it’s a minor character in a major scene, is it important for the reader to know facial stuff?   When is it ok to browse over a character’s facial detail and when isn’t it?

Any books, sites or general advice is massively welcomed.