Be Surprised

“Write until you surprise yourself.”

I read this quote just a few days ago. Being surprised while writing is something I have experienced before; and I would add to this quote, “and then keep writing.” The surprise is just the beginning.
I bring up this quote today specifically because I had a shocking surprise hit me this morning as I sat down to write the final chapter of my first novel. It was an alternate ending, and ending I almost feel inclined to say that I never would have thought of. And yet I did, or my characters did, and whispered it in my ear. Perhaps it is the truth of their story, guiding me along, because more than the shock of the new ending, was the surprise of how well it fit into the story as a whole. It tied up loose ends, made sense of character motivations, interpersonal connections, and how they came to be where they are.
However it happens, this magical confluence is one of the things I love about storytelling.