It's often been tossed around that there are basically two kinds of books, one driven by action, twists, suspense, and ideas (plot driven) and one that looks out through the eyes of the protagonist (at least) and explores his emotional journey in depth (character driven). You either hear people accept the dichotomy, or stress that character development is more important and scold wannabe genre writers for creating cardboard characters. Not to say that there aren't books that focus more on one than the other, and that's fine. But I've been thinking...the way this dichotomy has been tossed around, doesn't it sound like a bit of an excuse not to work on our weaknesses? Shouldn't "plot driven" writers work on their shoddy characters? Shouldn't character driven writers take their dull, dithering story and pump it up with some focus and tension? The more I think about this supposed "split" the more I think it's important for all writers to make their work as complete as possible. Even a thriller should have well developed characters so we care about them getting out of danger when that action starts. And as much as character is usually the more important element, plot is crucial too and you can't ignore it if you want readers to keep turning the pages!