Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Revision Pain

Cedar Fort accepted my manuscript, The Upside of Down, a few weeks ago. Last week an editor asked me to cut it by 6500 words. Ugh!

I've worked really hard to create a fuller, more-developed story. I actually added 20,000 words before I submitted it in hopes of making it feel more realistic and give readers a more enjoyable reading experience. And now I have to cut it. I feel like I'm cutting off fingers.

So far, I've cut 1300 words, but I've got a long way to go to make the 6500 request. I have to say, it's painful. I'm sure it will make it a better, tighter story, but it's agony at this point.

I don't want to cut any of the characters or storylines because I've created characters and storylines that intertwine and support each other within the framework of the story. Each character has a specific purpose as does each storyline.

Did I say this was painful? I guess I'm going to have to ax some scenes . . .

Anyone have any advice for cutting words?


Tamara Hart Heiner said...

Cutting can be very hard, especially the first time around.

Here's what I've done: Cut everything I think I can cut. Like you, that usually ends up being only 1/3 of what I need to cut. I give it a few days and do it again. Somehow, I find more than can be cut. But again, I'm not quite there.

By the timeI cut the third time, I find that I'm kind of getting excited about cutting. Feels like a demented catharsis.

Good luck!

RaShelle said...

First of all, congrats on getting published. That's awesome. Second, the cutting sounds tough. I have no words of wisdom other than: Good luck! You said you wrote an EXTRA 20k, therefore I believe you can get rid of 6k (it seems logical). Hi, I'm RaShelle, btw. =D

Lexie said...

Hey I say the longer the better!! I go through books way to fast and love to get ones that are really long!