I welcome a good epiphany. Usually. A sudden insight into the reality or meaning of something is never a bad thing. Well, never?
The other night I got blindsided by a big, fat, uninvited epiphany. As with most epiphanies, this one was sparked by a simple experience—I was reading an author interview in Writer’s Digest. But the epiphany itself was not so simple. It felt something like being body slammed by a pregnant elephant. I did not enjoy this particular insight. Not because of it’s size, or the slam, but rather because the ah-ha moment targeted my work in progress.
I have been busy revising a novel that I am pretty happy with. The revising has been going along smoothly--until the tackle by the four-ton epiphany. Now, although I believe that this insight will benefit my novel, I wonder if I can pull off what needs to be done. I am grumbling because accomplishing this means that I will have to go back into my structured, set plot and uproot things. I will have to rework and revise. Elements of the novel will become unsettle and characters will get knocked on their butts. Hunks of copy will have to be rewritten and reworked or trashed. The plot will almost certainly get tangled. Doubts and trepidations will surface and interrupt.
So, although I welcome epiphanies, I sometimes dread what they demand. But this is all part of being a writer, isn’t it?
What do you think about epiphanies—the good, the bad, and the ugly?