She lives where no one can see her. But I can. I know her face, the shade of hair, the shine of eyes. I hear the tone of her voice and how it breaks when she's angry with me. A lips quiver with a fleeting memory. The violent twist of her hands when she's uncomfortable. To my surprise, she constantly changes her mind. I build expectations and she knocks them down before I'm finished. Lego beliefs strewn across the floor.
My novel's protagonist. Antagonist, more like. Sure, she was never set in stone. I never knew what she looked like, what she believed in. What she ate for breakfast. That is not how I work. I am not a planner. I don't do spider-diagrams or character maps. I write.
But now my protagonist has leaped from the realms of character and is flesh, blood. She is a person with skin, veins, feelings and secrets untold. She has evolved beneath my fingertips. With every heavy score on the keyboard, she breathes life. I feel like Victor Frankenstein - without all the stealing of dead body parts.
Of course, I have not created a monster. Nor do I feel disgust when we are together - there in on the blank page, cursor blinking. But I am afraid of her. Of what she can do. I lead her along one route and she resists, wishing to go another direction. I want her to say one thing and yet she says something else, unexpected. I feel like she is writing this book and I'm just the body to use.
Is it normal - to be overwhelmed and lead by your character? Reader, what do you think?