I agree with you about the writing about People bit. The characters - how they think, what they want/desire, what annoys, their beliefs etc. - always fascinated me in stories, same for my writing. Plot?
I think right now I'm really influenced by Grant Naylor. One more than the other, though. Doug Naylor is just too angsty sometimes. Anyway, they both really delve into very complex characters--I love reading them, and I love writing them more.
That's pretty much the opposite of what I do. The way I usually write, I know them really well before there is an environment. I just don't know who they'll become. I like Dune and Lord of the Rings just fine, but I don't write milieu stories, so I don't often rely on whatever my world is. Not heavily, anyway.
Exactly it! It's hard to write something you're "supposed to", isn't it? I mean when is someone else doing the supposing, at least....
Oh, there's no such thing as a proper writer, I think. You just do it 'cause you love it, and call yourself a writer if you like the way the word looks on your hat. But that's only what I think.