Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Addition + Subtraction = A Polished Manuscript #iamwriting #Iamediting #Iamreading

I'm reading a book I've waited for (from this particular author) for some time. I'm loving it, and I'm reading it slowly, savoring it, because I know how unhappy I'm going to be when I reach the words THE END. There are a few authors or series I feel this way about. Some series get me hooked really hard, others I can take or leave. But the authors whose voices I like reading, don't need a series to hook me. I enjoy the rhythm of their sentences,  their choice of words, the emotion they pull from me, and pacing. As a result, they force me back for more, time and time again.

I find when I'm writing, I have to fight back the urge to dwell in my thesaurus. For some writers (ugh, like me), it's like a hot tub on a cold night or an eight course meal for the starving. I could immerse myself in the words and wallow in them when what I really need to do is move the plot forward. Today, for me, it's back to basics: goals for each scene and each character; motivation, again for each scene and character; and then...conflict (internal and external) to keep the scenes and characters interesting, the plot moving forward, and the readers interested. And no more than three, (Am I listening? Three!) descriptive words in a row. (And not in every sentence. Am I listening?)

That being said, this is why I'm self editing before I send my manuscript off to my long suffering beta reader. No need to bore the hell out of her with my endless parenthetical phrases and lengthy descriptive adjectives. I should say thank you to her for saving my readers from a two hundred thousand word book that goes on and on and on about nothing. LOL

I'm off to write and cut. ( I know some of you are thinking I should start cutting with this blog-sorry) Addition + Subtraction = A Polished Manuscript....(Eventually) Hang in there with me and keep writing and reading.

Working on Damn the Darkness (book 3 - Hearts  of Darkness)

1 comment:

  1. There's nothing wrong with a bit of self-editing. It's just that at some point you have to show some readers what you've got.

    There's always the chance that you show them the story right after a second round of edits in which you removed X, and then the reader comes back and says, "You know, I quite liked it, but I think it was missing a bit of X." Or maybe they won't even give you that much of a clue.

    Often when I'm editing I will not actually cut the old text until I'm satisfied that the new text is better. Which it usually is, because I'm comparing with the old as I write. In a sense that's not just subtraction and addition, it's replacement.

    Anyway, have fun with it. :)