Sunday, April 10, 2011

Snip, Snip

So, I've been working hard on a scene today--only about two-and-a-half pages long--and it's felt a bit agonizing. I just want to get it right. I see it in my head, know exactly what I want to happen, what I want the reader to feel--but translating that to the page can sometimes be a real challenge.

Sure, I did all the stuff we're told to do: plant your seat in the seat and work; go for a walk to clear your head; re-read it (out loud), make changes; walk away again and watch a t.v. show; return to it and keep chipping away.

And, in the end, I think I'm pleased with the result. Interestingly, the initial spark of creativity came quickly, and in a rush, I wrote the scene. That only took about ten minutes. But the snip, snip of editing had to be done, in order to refine it. At first, it was SO close to what I wanted, but not close enough. Snip, snip. Trim a word here, add a word there. Take this sentence out, move it up here.

It reminds me very much of this advice: A word or sentence must EARN the right to live. ~Unknown

So true. And though it can be painstaking to make sure that advice is followed, in the end, it's really worth it.

*fingers crossed* I think the scene is "ready." At least, until I look at it again tomorrow with fresh eyes. ;-)


  1. "A word or sentence must EARN the right to live." I LOVE this. Glad to hear that you are happy with your scene :)

  2. Thanks! I use that quote in all my classes (even 1301/1302) because it's so powerful. Wish I could claim it, but someone at a writer's conference about 13 years ago said it (can't recall if she was an agent or writer) and I wrote it down and remembered it.