Before I quit my day job to do this writing thing full time, I was talking to a co-worker who asked if it is lonely to write. Yes, I thought, it is kinda lonely in a way, but it’s not so lonely in another way. That’s a complex thing to discuss, though, so instead I answered like this:
“Well, in reality,” I said. “I’ve always got a lot of characters running around in my head. So there’s always someone to talk to.”
As I recall, the co-worker suggested I might not want to admit this to a lot of other folks if I wanted them to think I was sane. [grin]
Anyway, against that backdrop: there I was, writing along today when one of my characters forcefully spoke up and made me tweak her political viewpoint from “the government should not impede a person’s freedom,” to become “the government should not impede a person’s freedom unless that person was impeding another person’s freedom.”
Actually, she made the change almost without me noticing it, but then I stopped and thought about what had actually just happened. If you think about it, this is a very big change of philosophy. I asked her if she was certain about this, and she just stood there with her arms crossed and said she wasn’t going forward without the change.
Suddenly, I realized this altered a whole lot about how I viewed the story. In fact made a lot of the issues I was having with mental constipation go away.
So, yeah. The change stays.
And I’ll file it away as one more piece of evidence (among the avalanche) that my characters often know the root of their own story better than I do.