Once, I left two women locked in a basement for months on end, because life distracted me. Real life. If the two women had been real, too, I probably would have gone to jail. But as it was, I simply found them more interesting when I returned, on account of they had adjusted to their environment.
They were sitting on a literal mountain of food (one of them was a prepper), still arguing about who had, or hadn't, locked the door on them. They didn't look any worse for wear, and they even had the same clothes on. I remember exactly what they were wearing when I left, because one of them got a rip in her jeans bending down for a a case of canned ham. I have since considered changing it to a case of tuna, after learning how unhealthy that stuff is.
Which just goes to prove that setting a story aside for awhile really does have its benefits. That's my theory, anyway. The one about characters taking on a life of their own and getting out of hand is a bit too creepy for me. Imaginary people breaking into real life could really complicate things. So, that's why whenever any of my creations complain about being left somewhere too long, I get right on it.
Because it's more acceptable being a writer than to talk to yourself.
Any different opinions from my writer friends out there?