The way I see it, there are lots of new writers out there who are wondering if their writing experience is abnormal in some way, and this series is me saying: Phhhht. What's normal? We're writers, for heaven's sake.
Going on with this theme, I'm just going to come out and say that it's completely okay to ask your characters questions.
In fact, I recommend it. Yes, I know some writers create characters similarly to how people create cakes. (As in with a recipe or a set method.) You might be one of them. If you do the creation right, though, there should be some sort of aspect where the characters come alive. If they don't, you're doing it wrong.
This is where asking questions comes in handy. Often, when characters refuse to play along, it's because you don't know all you need to know yet. The easy way to do this is go: Hey, character (using their actual name), what's going on?
No, doing this doesn't make you insane. It makes you a writer.
Or it might make you insane and I'm insane because I do this often. In fact, when I feel like I'm not getting everything I should into my story, I'll sit down and do a character interview. Sometimes, the characters love talking about their hopes and dreams and whether they like cats. Others...not so much.
But then, even with the sullen ones being sullen, I'm learning about them. I learn how they talk. I learn how they react to people prying. I learn all sorts of lovely things I can
torture them with *ahem* use later.
See? All totally sane.
What about you? Do you talk to your characters? How does it go for you?