Astounding Layers

I was going to do a post about how my favorite writers always seem to build their characters and plots layer by layer—sometimes over many books—so that even the most opaque person can be defined by his or her silences and the most seemingly-straightforward story turns out to be amazingly involved, and then I’d try to work out if this is easy and instinctive or painstakingly difficult or both and why . . . and then I was going to hit you with the best and most beautiful visual analogy of this process I’ve ever seen.

But I think I’ll just step aside and skip straight to the visual:

How’s that for an analogy?