Originally Posted by Freeshadow
I think it's perfectly normal - for a reader with capable imagination. There are several authors reporting the characters "live" in their minds
(sometimes even telling their creators to stick the plot they currently planned somewhere where the sun don't shine, because they - the characters that is - planned it differently)
Isn't this what Heinlein referred to? Creation trough imagination.
Why shouldn't a reader develop awareness of this kind of life? That's IMHO the maximal level of immersion.
Tolkien is a good example of that. When Strider first appeared in the story, he had no idea who he was and struggled for months with him before he realized who he was.