I'm not sure if this is purely a Marine-ism or something that normal people say, as Marines have their own language. Marines say "On your own program, aren't you?" when someone is doing their own thing, instead of pulling for the team and following orders. In fact, it's also an acronym: OFP. Own. Frickin'. Program.
With SHARDS, my characters have been on their OFP.
The worst of it is the relationship between April and Connor. They break up early in the book, even though Connor and April are the fated lover types. April needs Connor's sanity, and Connor needs April's liveliness. At the end of the book, they were supposed to re-unite with a slightly ambiguous ending, agreeing to give their love a chance and rebuild their trust in each other.
But. They wouldn't stay broken up. It was only a matter of chapters before they admitted they missed each other. Then Connor started trying to help April with her situation. She confessed that she loved him, chose him. They would not stay apart, like they were supposed to.
So they have a happy ending, because I couldn't get away with writing anything else.
I find it best to accept my characters' stubborn natures and follow the deviations in my story arc, because anything else would ring false to me. But, man. How do characters get so out of control?
Does this happen to you? Do you try to steer your characters back down the path, or give up and let them run, skip and amble ahead of you to some unknown destination?
6 hours ago