Hey, everyone. I'm working on my first novel, an urban fantasy/mystery set in Seattle. I've got the basics pretty much worked out. I know who my characters are, I've got the magical details all ironed out, and I know who dunnit, and how it was dun. I've tried planning out each individual scene, to give myself a roadmap of where to go, but found that my best stuff has been coming from just closing my eyes and typing as the thoughts come. I'd intended the story to be primarily a mystery, set in a fantastical world: A man is murdered, my character finds out who, justice is served, and then we have cake. That much hasn't changed. But every time I start to work out the reasons WHY my killer killed, it keeps turning into this much larger, more epic thing with sinister overtones which would change the entire tone of the story and the planned series. I'd always intended for this series to start off with a couple of simple investigations which lead on to something bigger, badder and more world-shaking. Here's my question: Should I just roll with it, creating this elaborate plot for what was intended to be an introduction into this world/series? Or should I smack my characters around and tell them to straighten up and follow the program? I guess I'm scared that if I start with the dial set so high, I'll create a precedent for myself, and have to go bigger and bigger with each story.