In my novel The Sleep of Reason, my character will have a similar outcome to his adventures as a certain historical (and probably mythical) figure. I had known this from the start and even gave a hint of it in about the third paragraph of the opening page of the story. It’s the kind of historical reference that most people will not get, at least not until it is all laid out, and it was a reference I knew about only in the most general way.
Recently I began doing a bit more research on the historical counterpart of my protagonist so that I could bring their stories into finer alignment as the end of the story approaches. This is where it began to get weird.
I’ve mentioned on this blog once or twice that I sometimes feel as though I am not the creator of this story but merely the typist. It is as though the story exists “out there” and I’ve been given the challenge of hearing it in my head and getting it all written down. This sense was reinforced a bit when I started looking in the historical figure’s own story.
I don’t want to give away too much, but the parallels abound. The characters in my story’s household have counterparts in the mythological story. I can see a sort of resolution for one of my characters who was giving me a bit of trouble not fitting in. I’ve even decided to change the name of of of my characters to match that one a similar character in the mythology. It’s not my intent to rewrite a bit of obscure mythology. I feel as though I have my own story to tell. And it’s only in the ending that the stories are similar, but the similarities are striking.
I don’t ascribe to any supernatural explanations to my situation. It may be that I’m drawing too many inferences from the few similarities I’ve discovered. Or it may be that there are certain archetypical stories in the Western mind and I’ve merely come up with my own variation on one. Whatever the reason, I’m charged up with the serendipity of it all.