Disclaimer: My blog posts may lean a little to the baby side for a few weeks.
5. Cliché. A writer is generally supposed to avoid cliché characters, but raising a baby seems to be a shroud of deliberate rituals. You want to give your detective some sort of quirk (a funny limp, a cute psychiatric anxiety disorder, or even a heart-warming addiction to over-the-counter medication) to make him stand out in the motley crowd of fictional detectives, but your baby you just want to be unabashedly stereotypical–fat and happy.
4. Character Arc. You have at least a vague idea of who your character will become when you start out. She starts out shy yet sassy, but after 250 pages of trials and tribulations, she has become confident and sassy. Your babies, you can only toss wild guesses as to who they will become.
3. Conflict. Conflict is drama, they say. You want your characters to face painful obstacles. You want them to suffer, so their triumphs will taste all the sweeter. Your babies, you want their lives to be smooth as a gosling’s butt.
2. Poop. Fictional characters don’t poop, usually. Not on the page. There are some notable exceptions, but for the most part you don’t get into that part of your characters’ lives. It turns out that babies, on the other hand, are about very little else.
1. Kill your babies, they say about writing. But please, not literally.