To begin with I just write. When I complete my first draft I am, however, cognitive of how relatable my main character needs to be. In Pangea the protagonist is Idris. He needs to be strong enough to undertake the quests which drive the story onwards, yet weak enough that internal and external conflict can take place. He needs to be someone that others can read and think, “I want to know what happens to him.”
It is possible to complete a novel without this aspect. In my case, so much of the first novel in the Pangea trilogy is told from Idris’ point of view that all these questions and challenges need to be tackled!