Slapped in the Face with the Answer

Novel’s at 68,869 words.

My characters are smarter than me.

Throughout writing this book, there’s been a couple of weak links in the chain of my original outline. Places where various plot threads didn’t quite meet up. I’ve been debating — and discarding — different ways to resolve them, but never quite hit on the right way.

That is, until not one, but two of my characters told me the solution.

One of them did it quite early on, but I dismissed it as too easy a way out.

But this week, another character told me the same thing. This time, I listened.

It creeped me out a little, because they handed me both the solution and the justification for it. It ties all the plot threads together, makes sense of the entire chain of events, and deepens the conflict at the same time.

It’s beautiful, but even though it came from one of my characters, it doesn’t feel like my idea.

I’m using it anyway, though.