If the question had been, “Why do you tend to write characters in desperate circumstances?” I could have answered that question without the soul-searching. But this question was, “Why is it important to you to write characters in desperate circumstances.
I write Christian romantic suspense, so inside that genre, I need to have a faith arc, a romantic arc, and a suspense arc. Each of those arcs require internal and external conflicts, motivations, and different characterizations.
When I’m setting up and getting ready to plot a book, the first thing (other than my characters) that I need to know are what those conflicts and motivations are, and how they’re going to be resolved/utilized.