I was curious whether others had encountered surprises near the end of their novel that have added complexity and resulted in a delaying of the climax and end of the novel.
In my House of Many Doors, I had designed as the climax my young hero Chase's confrontation with his evil-mirror-world-twin Worm after Worm critically injures Chase's sister Thea.
Then, today as I was driving down to the 95th Street Library, it occurred to me that my healing of Thea through the tiny squid Tito was too much of a Deus ex Machina. So I had the House relenting and revealing, surprise, that Chase's dream of his childhood home (with the magical Mertovic family) being destroyed was a lie, merely a sending by the House to keep Chase from leaving the House. So Chase takes Thea (dying through internal bleeding) to the Mertovics for healing; and Nicolai Mertovic, his adoptive father, insists on taking Chase back to the House to destroy it or else take control of it so it will not again draw him back to it.
So much for quick, simple endings. :-/
More to write! (doable, I think)
What late surprises have you encountered in your novel?
When my main character's sister flew to Italy to protect her from possible rejection by their father, I almost had to have another week of novel-time -- which would have added more words than I wanted. To avoid this, I had her husbandgo to court seeking temporary sole custody of their daughter (claiming his wife had abandoned them).
My main character had to fly home. No extra week in Italy. Whew! (And it made for great conflict in the last few chapters.)
My MMC, Jackson, was supposed to have a bit of an outburst at my FMC, Gemma, about how calm she could be over the death of her grandmother. Instead, his mother came home after weeks (and after missing the funeral), and he threw all of the accusations at his mother instead, which brought up a lot of issues in their relationship and brought them together, but also opened him up a little bit to talking with Gemma so all three of them could heal. Additionally, by bringing his mom back so early, I was able to get Jackson and Gemma back in scenes together, instead of avoiding each other.
One of my main characters was killed by her boyfriend-kinda-not-really, and then the main character's friend chases him and ends up on Earth (this takes place in another world-ish sort of thing) with no memory of anything. So, yeah. I got a *lot* of writing to do...