The Characters are Alive!

I am experiencing something that is new to me. I have written dozens of short stories, blog posts, humor, even poetry. Finally making substantial progress on a crime novel, with over 40,000 words on paper. At about the 30,000 word point, something changed. Instead of me sitting down and thinking about the next scene in the book, the characters started coming alive!

I was writing a scene with my detective and his client having lunch at Bayside Marketplace in Miami. I was doing a good job adding the elements I thought was necessary, making sure the scene was relative to the plot, moving the story forward, making sure it was actually entertaining.  However, in the middle of lunch, the female client consumed three Mojitos. These are fruity rum drinks.  I did not plan for her to get drunk, but she did! Turns out it really made he scene better. And then, as our detective walked her to her car, opening the passenger door as he was going to drive, someone shot the window out!!!! What the hell? I had no assassination attempt planned for this scene! But my detective pushed his client out of the way, fell to his belly in the grass and pulled out his SIG P210 and placed four rounds in the attacker’s chest!

Holy crap! I have a drunk client passed out in the car and a dead attacker, and now City of Miami police swarming all over the place! How the hell did that happen?

Not only that, but this scene changed the entire dynamic of the novel and moved the plot into a totally different trajectory!

From that point forward, I stopped writing the scenes and just let the characters take over. And they are doing a damn good job. I can’t wait every day to sit down and let them use my fingers to type out the next scenes.

For the first time, I have no freaking clue where the story is going or what the next scene will be.

My characters are writing the book now.

I am having a blast!