Monday, October 8, 2012

Thoughts on Editing

Every writer has verbal tics.  They give you line disease. Writers in the throw of writing are busy imagining how the scene will play out.  Consequently, they use place holder words to get to the interesting part of the scene they can't wait for you to read. 

Banter amongst characters often transforms a scene into a play of words without the backdrop or setting or any action.  Suddenly the writer remembers...there isn't any scenery.  Voila, a sentence or two is drawn in, but then the train of thought of the banter gets lost as the scene becomes more fully rendered with the carpet and the vase and the food and the lighting, the hair, the costumes, "CUT!" the director in the brain yells.  "What were we talking about?" and the author says, "I don't remember but the curtains are pretty."

I had 1,411 "That's" in my book.  I've wordwacked 783 of them.  Many were misuses of the word that, for which and who or whom. 

I've also discovered phrases that make me wince at myself.  Editing a book is rather like looking at pictures of one's self in high school. 

Ultimately, reading a book requires the writer give you continuity of a world, likable characters, a meaningful believable plot with lovely turns of phrase that capture moments and thoughts and feelings more universal than the fictional situation evokes, and nothing extra.  Currently, my book needs a diet and an organizational plan, it has too much clutter and too many piles. There's lots of good stuff but it is covered by other things.  Lots of potential, lots of work to get there.  In short, books look like their authors, or mine does.

Except for one thing, it's a lot easier to remove the "thats" than it is to organize my home.  Perhaps because all of that in my home, needs a who to remove them.   

No comments:

Leaving a comment is a form of free tipping. But this lets me purchase diet coke and chocolate.

If you sneak my work, No Chocolate for You!