I've been working on the raccoon story today. (I'm up to chapter 19.) I just discovered something about my MC, Thorn, which I'd kind of suspected. Except this secret was the tipping point that caused my story to change audiences, from MG to YA. But I was like, for Pete's sake, if the story needs it, put it in, and let it be a YA. So what if animal stories are supposed to be MG. Just do the Watership Down thing and be done with it.
The story had already been scooching into YA territory because Silverlady, the other MC, wanted to get married and start a family, which is more a YA concern. I was trying to keep it MG by saying, "Well, what she really wants is a family, since she never had one." Well, so much for that!
But I'm happy that the story has decided to be a YA. It's strange, but I always felt a little constrained by the MG label everyone kept putting on my story. It's not that MG is less good. It's just that I kept thinking, "Well, I can't say that, I can't do that" -- like I had to censor myself because of the audience. And that I didn't love the novel as much because I couldn't let it be itself.
Anyway, Thorn's secret is awesome. Oh, the ending, you're going to love it! I changed it in light of this new knowledge, and now it's just so wonderful! I am so happeeeeeee! Okay, enough exclamation points.
Only problem is, I just finished writing the cool scene where he admits this secret, but just as soon as I finished that scene, the following scene seemed so utterly trite and pointless that I immediately felt stuck. I'm a wimp.