2. How many characters do you have? Do you prefer males or females?
Well, gee, I really couldn't say. Between two vast series, it is safe to say that I have at least a couple dozen prominent characters. And by "prominent" I mean have extensive roles and backgrounds. When you write as lengthy as series that encompass entire universes like I do, you're going to have a crapton of characters. One series currently has about 8 characters to primarily focus on, and the other has about 5. This all fluctuates from book to book, of course!
I have a pretty even split on male vs. female characters, but I definitely prefer writing the ladies. This can be seen from the two most obvious reasons, ie. that I am female and feel more comfortable with it, and that well hell love women. But even when I was younger I liked writing female characters, because they were easier for me to relate to and I felt more confident in my portrayals of them. Plus, I find women just more fascinating to write and read about. You can cross a lot of boundaries with female characters. There's also the fact that you can usually just go to town on their appearances. See: Sims 3.
I've gotten better at adding more variety to male characters in the past few years, however. It probably helps that most of my friends in real life tend to be guys, so I've had quite the ride analyzing the male psyche from my perspective. Not to say I know everything about men, but I've been told, and am kinda starting to believe it myself, that I tend to think in and view the world in a "masculine" way. So, my characters end up being an extension of that themselves, whether they are male or female.
Yay day 2! 28 to go!