How can you thrill readers if you can’t even surprise yourself?

If I don’t every 2 or 3 chapters find myself saying, “Wow! I sure didn’t see that coming!” then I feel I’ve failed as a story teller. – Which is one of the main reasons I never outline.

And any time I hit a spot where I get all paranoid that I may never be able to work my way out of this particular twist, I just remember, “Hey; I’m the guy who killed off his narrator 2/3rds of the way through one of his books without any idea whatsoever how I could ever finish the story after that.” I tell myself, “Heck. If I was able to work my way out of that one …!”

The deeper truth

The afterlife is not what you’ve been led to believe.
Neither is life.
Find the deeper Truth and heal.
– “The Gardens of Ailana” handbook for healers & mystics

Before anything exists, there is potential

Before there is time, or form, there is Potential. All things are possible.
There is Caring before there is anyone to care about. And before we create raging and fear.
Before guilt there is the purity of true Innocence.
Before knowledge there is Knowing.
Ailana looked out into the vastness with her eyes closed. In her heart she was smiling, and that world beyond worlds smiled with her.
She was dying.
But this only mattered to her body. Her spirit was not confined much to that these days.
She had a few more people to help first, and then she could step free of it.
A few who had been fighting their ways out of their own darkness seemed so very close to breaking through.
It was time.
They were ready.
– From “The Gardens of Ailana” handbook for mystics & healers

When your writing doesn’t go according to plan.

Writing, like any art, is creative exploration. In my own case, that works best if I follow my inspiration. I probably finished, or came close to finishing, the first draft of my latest novel half a dozen times. When inspiration comes, don’t turn away from it. If it suggests you write, write! If it suggests you edit, edit! It may also suggest you kill out your favorite characters, lose your favorite scenes, or re-distribute whole chapters. It may not be what you had planned, but if you keep pushing forward you will likely be much more excited by whatever you and your muses write together than you would have been by following only your own original plans and concepts.