Trimming the Fat

Blog Post No. 416

screen-shot-2017-09-06-at-12-17-07-pmI’m on the cusp of finishing the third draft of Break/Interrupt. In case you didn’t know, it the fourth novella in The Synthetic Albatross series. There is still a lot to do, but I’m at a point where I think the story itself is good enough to pass it along and get some outside opinions. I hadn’t cut as much as I’d hoped. A slice of the book is devoted to the connectivity of the series. Since the stories all overlap (this one more than the others) I had to fill in some gaps (and possibly set some things up for future books).

What I have been doing is trimming paragraphs and sentences. Doing just that, I’ve been able to eliminate a few thousand words. It’s nowhere near the length I had planned, but I’ve hit a bit of a wall in eliminating large sections. I do have a few potential places where I could force myself to take out the axe if I feel the need. For now, I’m going to send it over to Christian for his review. I can trust him to give me solid criticism (the constructive kind). His perspective may help me pinpoint some more areas to chop, but I’m not going to worry too much about the length. The book being bigger means it’s going to cost more, though. I can’t sell it at a loss.

giphy-1When it comes to the Invasion Novel, still a little ways off, I’ll have to be ruthless. I’m not allowed to back out in the middle of the editing process. It’s more important to get the right length since it’s supposed to eventually be submitted to agents. There will be no room for wasteful fluff. Also, there are much more obvious and easy places to cut. I did a lot of meandering trying to find my way. The first fifty-thousand words are probably better off closer to thirty-thousand or less.

I’m also hopeful that with the next novella, I’ll be able to stick to my planned length a little better. I can’t keep letting stories get longer and longer and have to cut them down in the editing. For now, I still have a lot more editing to do with Break/Interrupt, I have to figure out the cover, and I have to find the right font for the title (a surprisingly time consuming task). I’m really excited to get to the point where people are going to read it. I’m so used to writing with other people around and by the time the book is done, they usually have a good idea of what to expect. This time, it will be mostly a surprise. I hope it’s a good one.

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