I had prepared another post for today, but something that happened yesterday derailed me.
I was showering, mentally letting the characters in my minds eye do what they would, when the lights went out. From bright lights shining on sunshine yellow walls to pitch black. There are no windows in my bathroom.
Now if you had asked me a week ago how I’d behave in the shower if the lights suddenly went out, I would have said one word: lunatic. I would have been screaming and crying and immediately think a psycho killer had stalked me and any second was going to whip back the curtain and stab my still-screeching, half-suds corpse. I would have valiantly tried to fight, but really, who wins a naked fight?
Nakedness in the dark aside, I got my second surprise of the day. My reaction was actually “Oh Fudge, I think I’m blind.” Oh so calm. I even blinked hard a few times to test my blindness and found that I could see just a bit. Again, with the calm that came from God knows where, I stepped out of the shower, opened the door and finished up. I actually patted myself on the back for not freaking out.
How does this come back to writing?
Just that sometimes, no matter how well you think you know a character, how well you plotted her actions, she might zig when everything you know tells her to zag. That near miss cannibalism scene in my non-horror novel? Totally unexpected, but once of the best moments thus far. So embrace the unexpected. Occasionally it yields wonderful results.
What was your last (happy) unexpected writer moment?