My very first story had …from memory 8 couples. It was a bit like Downton Abbey, showing the different sides of life and love. Still unpublished, though maybe one day I’ll dare. Meanwhile, untangling them a bit more sounds like a good idea.
One of my personal writing issues is I tend to pack my books and stories with way too many characters. If a fascinating person walks into one of my stories, I feel it would be rude not to let them join the party. I suppose my inner Manners Doctor takes over. 🙂
This drives my editors batty. They think confusing the reader is worse than being rude to fictional people. And of course they’re right. They usually tell me I need to consolidate minor characters or eliminate them altogether. Someone even told me there’s a “rule” that a novel should have seven characters or less.
I’ve always been annoyed by all this. But this week I saw a thread in a readers’ Facebook group that helped me see the reader’s point of view.