marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,

the longer and shorter of it

Sometimes you revise for length.  Nuisance.  Much easier when you are just trying to follow the story wherever it leads.

Except that sometimes you land plop in the middle of the Unpublishable Void -- or near enough to its brink that fiddling with length is wise.  Putting the story in the cheese press to squeeze out the extraneous and get it under -- one hopes -- 8000 words.  Or trying to weave in a few more strands to get it over 75,000  -- or 1000, since some markets don't take shorter than that.

The real annoyance is when you hit a spot where (even though you're shortening) it lacks clarity or liveliness or any other  necessary virtue that will need more words, or (even though you're lengthening) it has conspicuous deadwood that needs hacking out.  So you sigh and brace yourself and do the damage to the length you want trying to tell yourself that better story is better than right length. . . .

Tags: grumbles, revision, story length

  • Witch Hat Atelier, Vol. 8

    Witch Hat Atelier, Vol. 8 by Kamome Shirahama The continuing adventures of Coco, learning magic. Tartah arrives at the atelier to ask for help:…

  • Ghost in the Vision

    Ghost in the Vision by Jonathan Moeller Ghost Night book 7, spoilers ahead for the earlier books -- and earlier series. Caina arrives Istarinmul,…

  • Appendix N

    Appendix N: The Eldritch Roots of Dungeons and Dragons by Peter Bebergal A selection of works from the famous D&D Appendix N. With some…

  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded