Charles Dickens was. He relied on his “method” to articulate what characters would say and do, much like a method actor would to get into a particular role.
The method is to use your imagination and and empathy to become the character in the situation. Then — and only then — give the character a voice, and write it down.
Dickens used to do this in his writing cabin. He would actually get up form his desk and pace about talking out loud in the manner of the character. It looked as though he were mad. Bram Stoker did this to create the Dracula character.
Only by becoming the character can you speak through that character to your audience. Why is this such a big deal? There is a certain power in being someone – not aspiring to be someone, but feeling the presence. This video of Wayne Dyer gives you a peek into that power. Wayne proposes this as a life lesson. It may apply more to writers who aspire to be their characters in order to create them in a more vivid way.