Possessed by the Story

Characters have been fleshed out, the world building is done, the story arch is set- now, my novel is writing itself. My characters are telling me what they would say or do in this situation. The world is showing me what would happen next.

It's telling me the powers don't work that way, they work this way. I didn't make the decision to describe what my characters were seeing when they walked through the village (I hadn't planned on them walking through it actually) but, when I reached that point in my story, the words just came.

I didn't decide my characters would react this way to what they were seeing, their reactions sort of came out of me. I didn't think, "In the end, this character will marry this one," they just fell for each other.

It's strange thinking of the story, my characters and their world as though they were living beings but it has to be done. If the story doesn't come alive for me, will it for the reader?

Do I maintain any control over how things unfold? I'd like to think I do but only in the sense that I could stop writing it.

No, not even that is under my control. This series wouldn't let me stop until it's done. It's haunting me all the time with character interactions, places where more research is needed, characters' past and how it affects them in the story. I even dream about them! My mind is putting the characters in situations that have nothing to do with the story.

I've passed the point where I could stop writing- if that point existed in the first place. Do we really make the decision to write the story or does the story make it for us?

In my case, the story or scene comes to me and I have to follow where it leads. Okay, I could ignore them when they pop into my head but, in the end, they wear me down.

It's far easier to follow the story.

 I've said this in other posts but I see it now more as I'm reaching the end of my first novel and watching how everything is falling into place so perfectly.

This is how it's supposed to be. I needed to distance myself from my novel to reach this point. Things can't be included simply because I like the way they sound. In the end, the story is not about me.