The mysterious mentor, the hero's best friend, a cast of stock characters to pad out the story. Have fun or not and pick one with a twist. -- Knitnan
[AN: If you're inserting stock characters to pad out a story, you're writing wrong. Also please read this thing at the top of my prompts topic. Y'all should know me enough by now that I always pick a twist.]
Imagine, if you will, that there is a space in which everything unwritten, unthought-of, and unconceived yet in the creative ether can exist. Call it... Waitspace. It is a place where things waiting to become an imagined thing exist in a nebulous vapour. The more an idea is reached for, the more it becomes a personality. Just one at a time, though.
There are physical qualities, like Enormous Bosom. There are more nebulous concepts, like Obligatory Stupid Guard. There's the entire cast of the Hero's Journey. All of them are waiting, once again, to be made Real. They're waiting for a scriptwriter, for an artist, for an author, for a game designer... For someone to use their archetype, their memetic pattern, their base as the launching point for a character.
They wait, and they do not leave. If their pattern sparks something, they become just that little bit more solid. If their pattern is neglected, they fade. Some patterns are no longer needed nor wanted - like the Burden Child. It lingers in a narrative of a select few, but it is hardly used for creative efforts any more. The people who use that one tend to be the opposite of creative. Do not be sad for that personotrope. It is merely an idea. There are bad ideas.