I saw myself aged six or seven standing by my mother at the kitchen table. It was half-term and my mother, a teacher, had that precious week at home. I reached up to take the wooden spoon she offered and stirred the mixture in the caramel-coloured white-lined earthenware bowl. I closed my eyes and made a wish.
Many years later, my own six year old son standing on tip-toe, eyes shiny, cheeky grin, finger poised to pinch some of the cake mixture, was initiated into the Christmas cake stirring and wishing ritual.
These memories open the door to what we are, what we aspire to be and what we hope our legacy will be.
Ditto our characters. What did they do at six or seven? You don’t need to tell your readers, but you do need to know.