Editing and Cutting Again
I've been doing a lot of spring cleaning with my novel. As I'm writing up new stuff, I'm having to cut out a lot of old stuff. After all, the current goal is to cut those words down, so I need a net loss. Frankly, it's a little demoralizing at times, but that's what this is all about: killing your darlings.
On the bright side, I can at least say that this experience is forcing me to become a more succinct writer. I just cut a diner scene between Jonathan and Reagan in my latest editing session. I liked it, I thought it was fun and it helped play out the personalities of the two men and their relationship to one another, but in the end, there was nothing to be gained from the scene that couldn't be summed up. Instead, I now have a brief paragraph as their car rolls up to Jonathan's first mission as a Paladin. It's tight, it flows with everything that's going on, and it gets the reader right into the flow without the long pause the former scene insisted on.
If I had to take a guess, I'd say I'm about 25% through this edit. It's hard to tell with all the new stuff I'm adding, but I know what still has to be removed and what has to be replaced. Fortunately, I'm thinking I can still take a significant chunk out of the word count. How I'm going to do so without affecting the plot... er... that's another matter. Still, I gotta do what I gotta do. I love this story, I'm excited to share it with all of you, and I'm thrilled at the idea that once this is off the ground, I might actually make a living like this.
Be Excellent To Each Other.
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Keep your eyes open for my debut novel, The Paladin.