Wednesday, May 4, 2011

A mind of its own...

If you are a writer, you know how a story and/or characters can get away from you if you're not careful. Well, I thought I was being extremely careful. Apparently not.

It all began with an epiphany. I had a problem letting my Special Agent characters run an errand not related to their FBI job description. But they had to go to this man's house to begin their search. So how to allow them to make the trip? I thought: if only they weren't Special Agents...and then: why did they have to be? This evolved into breaking away from the Special Agent angle and instead making EP a part-time consultant for the Bureau - along with other employment. Suddenly she had a whole other job apart from the FBI, through which she could easily be hired to make the errand. Voila! I was on the right track.

Or so I thought. While this change in direction seemed the perfect fit for EP (my MC), it seems to go against my original plans for AD, her sidekick. He gets lost in EP's splendor - I'm always forgetting about him unless EP needs him. He was supposed to be an equal for her, but instead he's turning into the strong, silent, muscled type. Not exactly what I wanted for him. And as I write along, EP as the empowered, intelligent type is dissolving into something else much more...self-centered. Not exactly what I'd had in mind.

And then by Chapter 7, all heck seemed to break loose. My plot, already faltering, began to spiral, and to get the results they needed my characters began doing gray-area things that, after writing them, I was shocked to find they had just done. "You are not mobsters!" I declared, for all the good it did.

So now I have printed out the chapters already written and begin an extremely interesting (and frightening) read-through before figuring out my next move. Here's hoping I can salvage their integrity before they join the mob. (That's what I get for reading Holly Black's Red Glove and watching old episodes of The Untouchables at the same time.)

So are these new changes good? Horribly bad? I'll let you know.

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