Writing yourself into a corner
It happens all the time, writing along without a plan and wham. Not only do you not know what’s next, there’s obvious answer.
Here is a possible solution. If it is a physical problem, like being caught in a room or a trap, the way out is to back up and either allow for an exit in previous dialogue or have another character do the rescue/diversion.
Most often blocks exist because the characters do not have internal conflicts. Give an antagonist a personal conflict and that will stop her from many actions, even force her to do things that at first glance seem out of character. Fears, insecurities and past events can create great internal conflicts for any character.
Of course this requires backing up into the story a bit to establish this conflict, but usually to break through block, reversing and establishing some kind of plot or character issue is necessary.
The “What happens next?” syndrome is common with seat of the pants writing. Often writing oneself out of a corner can cause a plot or personality mismatch in the back pages.
This is why the 3by3 writing method inserts constant contained conflict in every character and each scene. With conflicted characters and scenes, the story often falls flat or gets stopped.
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