We’re surprised when our protagonist’s legs turn to Jello in the face of a problem. She was so strong and confident in the early pages. We don’t like our antagonist…never have. So when he makes a sweet gesture or we learn of his troubled past, we have a strong desire to forgive him. Of course he then rears his ugly self once more under the scrutiny of our pen and we slide back into the assurance that all is as it should be.
I love the way characters take on a life of their own as I type. I love to see how they take charge of the story and twist it until it suits them. It’s a gamble to write freely and give the characters space to grow. It is likely to require a serious red pen effort to round them up, get them back in line, or cut them out of the story completely.