It can certainly happen that characters in more sophisticated stories can 'take over' as they develop and change the author's original ideas. Well, it certainly happens to me at times.
I was able to work out all sorts of attitudes to style and event and character, all of which affected the way I came to think about my own writing. I believe that all good writers are original.
By the time ordinary life asserted itself once more, I would feel I had already lived for a while in some other lifetime, that I had even taken over someone else's life.
I've never actually been a fighter myself - fighting tires me out and I'm not an efficient fighter anyway - but I have certainly seen other people have great complicated goes at one another.
I don't think I prefer writing for one age group above another. I am just as pleased with a story which I feel works well for very small children as I do with a story for young adults.
Ellis's understanding of himself and the world around him certainly develops because of his adventures, and part of that development comes through recognizing other people for what they are.
When I was a child I had a best friend who lived across the road from me. When her mother died unexpectedly it was like losing a member of my own family. I think I am still affected by the memory of that loss.
There are certainly times when my own everyday life seems to retreat so the life of the story can take me over. That is why a writer often needs space and time, so that he or she can abandon ordinary life and 'live' with the characters.