Thursday, July 26, 2012

Unexpected Complications

There are many things that happen when writing a novel, some of which you don't expect, even if you're an outliner. Yesterday I had a burst of writing, in which I wrote 9k and pushed the word count of Balancing Act up to 45k. There is a scene in which Callie sneaks out and ends up spraining her ankle. When I first started this part of the book out, it was simple enough. But then I realized, her path back to her room was a fir tree outside her window. After she sprains her ankle, how was she supposed to get back home?

This spurred a whole little path in the story, and it went in a way I wouldn't have expected, and effected where the story went next, even though I had it outlined.

When you're writing, things like this happen. One thing can change the entire story. It's frustrating, and exciting, and tiring, and did I mention frustrating? But once you've surpassed the problem, you can look back and be very satisfied.

Last night I was exhausted from so much writing. I even went to bed early, which for me is not easy.

What's an unexpected complication that's come up in your writing?


  1. Oh, I love when that happens. That thrill of discovery as you're going is one of the reasons I'm a pantser. And it's true, one little change can often spin off whole scenes or change the plot entirely. It's fun to share these details with others, too. I'm kinda thinking if/when I finally have a book published I'm going to have a section on my website with random trivia like that that I think readers would find fascinating. :)

    I've actually run into this even more as I've been revising this current MS - I changed out a character for another, and the person's relationship and role as regards the MC therefore changed, and it messed up some details of the plot that I've had to figure out new ways to still make the plot happen but with these different circumstances, and... it's been challenging. But I actually feel that all these unplanned changes have really strengthened the story.

  2. I'm with Seabrooke - I love it when this happens. It's fun to see what adventures your characters take you on.

  3. I agree with both of you! It is very enjoyable to have your characters take you somewhere new. I also find it exhausting, though :P