Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Hardest Thing I Ever Had To Do...

Okay, so tell me, what is the hardest thing you ever had to do as a writer? For me it can be expressed in a phrase I was told by an oft-published friend... "There are times when you have to kill your darlings..."

My first reaction was to say: "What?"

The answer I got was simple. The scene was great, it was full of action, both physical and psychological. So what was the problem you ask? It didn't belong in that novel for one very valid reason: It didn't move the story along.

How does a writer determine whether or not to kill his/her darling? I have to read the story out loud at least twice, once with the scene and once without it. If after the second reading I find that the story has not suffered by eliminating my darling, I have to kill it.

Keep in mind the single most important rule of writing (Forgive me if I forget who first said this) "The goal of the writer is to say the most in the fewest words."

Happy writing.



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Jerry said...

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