Cut, cut, cut….

I´ve just finished the rewrite of Flight Into Darkness and removed almost 10,000 words.  If you read all of the advice to would-be writers, you find that cuts are usually good.   I didn´t believe this originally but I am now a convert.  The pace has improved vastly.

As a writer, quite often you put stuff in that is necessary for you at the time but which becomes unnecessary by the time you reach the end.  Leaving these bits in is vanity; no one likes deleting words that they have sweated blood over.  More than that, it commits a cardinal sin; that of under-estimating the intelligence of the reader.  Apparently, he/she is quite adept at reading between the lines and prefers to be allowed to do a little guesswork regarding the story.   For the writer to keep one step ahead of the reader is a skill that I have only just started to learn but a clue is: cuts.  Cuts are good.  Cuts are pure.  Cuts are holy.  Just make sure you don´t cut through an artery.  The rest is slimming.

The rewrite was based on the second read by my fab editor Debi Alper (http://debialper.blogspot.com/ and she had to agree with the criticisms regarding pace.  She´s an absolute gem; she even went through the last MS and did a copy-edit which made the rewrite much quicker and easier.  Anyway, it´s done now.  I guess it´ll never be perfect, but when do you stop revising?  Every time I read it, I change something.  The next time I change it back again.  I think that´s when it has to go out of the door.

Good luck to Peter Buckman and fingers crossed.

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6 Responses to Cut, cut, cut….

  1. Cristina says:

    Hi Roger,
    I´m reading your book under the sunny sun of the sunny Spain and I think it´s really good!. I´m enjoying the reading and can´t wait to find out what happens next. Very good luck with the publishing.

  2. rogerjhardy says:

    Thanks Cristina! It’s sunny here as well of course. I’m afraid my agent wants a partial rewrite to strengthen Hayward’s character but the plot stays the same. More work, but I have plenty of time! xxR

  3. Cristina says:

    I like Hayward … but Katja is my favourite, of course.

  4. rogerjhardy says:

    I liked Hayward as well, but the revised version will have sexual intrigue between him and Katja. Katja (at present) is a much more interesting character. At least, that’s what everyone has told me. They want to see more of her. Hayward’s new character has to be a match for her and at the moment, she’d have him for breakfast. Feisty women sell books, it seems. Maybe that’s why you like her….!

  5. Cristina says:

    For sure that´s why I like her. Then you definitely need Humphrey Bogart, he is the best with that kind of women …

  6. rogerjhardy says:

    I don´t know; he’s too old and wrinkly and not pretty enough, ewven when he was young. I’m still thinking…….

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