Stuart Woods: "I gave up outlining a long time ago. It seems to me that going by the seat of my pants is a more interesting way to write a novel. If I can't figure out what's happening, then I don't think the reader can, and that's very important to me."
Is it really that hard to write a female character who is brilliant at her job but mentally sound? And if you need to make her interesting is it too much to ask that you simply write a back-story for her?