One of my friends from college moved up to Seattle "for a couple years" and 6 years later, she's still there. We talk every so often and try to get together whenever she's in town (because she's got tons of family here), but she got me thinking. Though she's not a day-to-day part of my life, I really value her friendship, more so than some of the people who are in my life day-in and day-out.
Our friendship is low maintenance: we don't have to talk/text/see each other every day or even every other day, yet whenever we get together or chat on the phone, it's like picking up exactly where we left off last time, plus a quick recap of all that's gone on since the last time we talked. Around when I need her, and I'm there for her whenever, but we both recognize we have our own lives. It's great.
Now, if only my characters were that way. My relationship with my characters are far more high maintenance then I'd like them to be, especially during a first draft-which is where nearly all my wips are right now.
How much maintenance are the relationships you have with your characters? And how do you handle it?