marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,

revising for length

grumble grumble grouse grouse

It's impossible, when revising, to entirely forget that the story's length will be going up or down with just about every line that's touched.  Particularly if it's at an awkward length.

No matter how often you remind yourself that a bad story won't sell just because it's been constrained to more publishable lengths.

Even when you remind yourself that a story can't really just be spun out longer.  It needs more structure to it.  A subplot.  A minor character whose help can be made more significant to his own character development, and so create his own character arc within the tale.  Or something else to make the tale thicker as well as longer.  Perhaps even especially then, when just adding events tempts one to make it longer without making it thicker.  To be sure, throwing in a few more events might cause the story to sprout subplots, inspiration can be tricky like that, easily striking the middle of the work. . .

grumble grumble grouse grouse grouse

Tags: character arc, grumbles, minor characters, revision, story length, subplots

  • Sidelights on New London and Newer York and Other Essays

    Sidelights on New London and Newer York and Other Essays by G.K. Chesterton Chesterton mostly on the Jazz Age. The first two parts are heavily…

  • Avowals and Denials

    Avowals and Denials - A Book of Essays by G.K. Chesterton A selection of essays written by Chesterton in 1934. More or less topical. It helps, for…

  • Image and Imagination

    Image and Imagination: Essays and Reviews by C.S. Lewis A collection of his work, often occasional. It gives some interesting glances. A review of…

  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded