Writing a book, even one's fifth, is always fraught with surprises. Now why do I say fraught?
The Molotov Cocktail scene, and its subsequent follow up, which I expected to be difficult to write, practically wrote themselves. Did the research, thought about how everything might transpire, and sat down and wrote it. Cool. I fretted and thought, "Oh this will be so hard!" but actually, it wasn't.
Now I have a scene where a romantic lead comes back to town. Should have been a piece of cake.
Not so. Couldn't get it right.
Did some thinking.
I need this scene for two reasons: to advance the plot and to create a future plot point relating to the (exciting) conclusion, so I can't scrap the scene. Finally, I realized I didn't understand how my character actually felt about this guy showing up during a particularly crazy week in her life. The scene required long, even hard thought. She was conflicted, very conflicted, and I had to show this and show the reasons for her conflict. It wasn't something I could gloss over.
Every scene requires deep thought, along with conflict, and forward movement. As a writer, you can't really fake it. You have to be there, put yourself into the scene along with your characters. This is a lesson I hope I don't forget. The simplist scene requires thought and knowledge. No faking it. No gloss.