Monday, March 10, 2014

Pick up, examine, then ....

pitch or keep?

I'm in a clean-out binge lately, and that's been my mantra. Look at something, examine it and think about it, then keep it or pitch it. I can now say that every closet and every drawer holds only what I want to keep. I have the garage, the "gun room" (a.k.a., the secret room in the basement: a long story), and the porch to do, and I can't do the garage or porch because it's too freaking cold.

I recently did the same thing with the book I'm writing. I was a bit stuck in the mid-book blues, so I left the book for a day or two, fussed around with another book, then came back and re-read what I had. I immediately saw the problem. I was at a mid-book crisis for the characters, but I hadn't properly set it up.

I had to do the same thing with my most recent release. I originally wrote 2 books: one set in the past, and one in the current day. Then I thought I'd combine the two and alternate chapters. Talk about editing! I examined every scene -- no, every word -- and had to decide what to keep or pitch. I lost a lot of scenes I adored, but it made for a better book to lose them.

Keep or pitch ... my mantra going forward.


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