Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Aha! Now You're On To Something! by Sandra Ardoin

One of the things I love about writing is the “Aha!” moment. I’m not talking about the moment in the story when your main character discovers where he took the wrong path or determines his thinking is a lie. I’m talking about that time when I, as the author, find I’ve inadvertently included something in the manuscript that becomes the key to the story.

Whether you’re a plotter, a pantser, or something in-between (like me), you’ve experienced what I mean. That word, sentence, action, or tidbit that leaps from your brain onto the screen without planning and ends up being what you use to tie up loose ends, slip in an unexpected plot point, or deepen the climax. Discovering the reason for that entry is a euphoric experience.

I recently completed a story that gave me fits. It did NOT want to be written—at least not the way I intended to write it. I thought the climax needed a certain action, and the heroine… Ugh! Don’t even get me started on her rebellion. 

After begging God for the answer to wrangling that puppy to a completion, He pointed me to something I had included at the beginning. It wasn’t much, just a simple term my hero used for his nephew’s bedroom. That term became the motivation for a scene that led to a satisfying conclusion. It was not the ending I had envisioned. It was a simple revelation that made all the difference in the world to my hero.

Isn’t that the way it usually is in our own lives? We don’t always need something to explode in our faces to see where we’ve gone wrong. Sometimes, we only need a word (or advice) inserted at the right time and in the right context.

You can call the insertion of these gems "luck" all you want. I call it God writing His will through me.

What about you? What was your last "Aha!" moment in your writing (or life)? Share your experience.


Sandy writes inspirational historical romances with stalwart heroes who melt the hearts of her spirited heroines. Her goal is to entertain the reader with a gripping story while revealing the depth of God’s love and forgiveness. As well as being the Wednesday hostess on the Seriously Write blog, she blogs at You’ll also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Goodreads, and Pinterest. Sandy is the married mother of a young adult. She enjoys reading, country music, and gardening in her rocky, North Carolina soil.