Monday, 18 September 2017

First review from publishers of manuscript for second book ('A Spring Awakening' probably) came back. Always a kick in the teeth! 'Lose 20,000 words, cut dialogue between main characters, chop this bit, lose this reference...' Hard because you've labored over it, and some of those bits are essential to plot or characterisation. But there's a helpful phrase I came across: writing is rewriting. The perspective of another set of eyes tells you when the padding sucks energy and movement from the plot. People read what moves. There, that's a saying with at least a couple of meanings. People read what moves. Moves along. Moves them. Moves society. And maybe I tend to be verbose in my writing, which is ok in a reflective piece, but not a novel. A novel must have pace. Pace not peace! Not until the end anyway. I do favour a happy ending!
But then again, what's the point of having pace, if the reader isn't engaged with the characters? I like the view for fiction: 'just because it's not true, doesn't mean its not real'. The characters have to be 'real' for the action to mean anything. Otherwise it's like one of those Sci fi films where the whole budget has been spent on eye - boggling action but the people and what happens to them doesn't engage. Boring! So there's a balance here. Shall I cut out everything that makes the people real, a lot of which is interaction through dialogue? Of course not. 
A balance. The reviewer must be obeyed! But not completely! Otherwise, why not just write shorter books? Chop out every alternate chapter! And, by the way, I love the chunky feel of how 'A Christmas Calling' has come out. Thank you Instant Apostle #IA
For my future biographers: A PICTURE OF THE AUTHOR AS A YOUNG MAN

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