I don't think that this will be a long post, but I believe it will be interesting. I feel it is important to share many discoveries we make as writers and pass them along. Currently, I am working on another new story, which is moving rapidly.
Today, I was in the middle of an action scene when to my surprise suddenly an antagonistic and threatening figure came out of nowhere. Not only were the main characters startled and shocked, but so was I. Was this planned, no, but when the scene finished, it was a vast improvement.
I have mentioned this about writing before. I am just a passenger in my stories. I try to put myself in the scene and observe the goings on at sea level. Not from above or below, but standing next to my characters. They dictate where we are going next.
I am learning to take chances and push through all of the safety nets. If I remain conservative then I don't believe I am any good to my readers or myself. One cannot be afraid to venture into the unknown or push the envelope a little further than one would normally. What is the worst that can happen, oops made a mistake?
In the bigger picture, taking alternative paths can be quite gratifying and quite surprising.