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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Grist for the Mill » Is there anything so sweet

   
Author Topic: Is there anything so sweet
babooher
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as the first cut?

I finished my (crappy) first draft of a story on Saturday night. It was about 4,500 words longer than I'd like. Now it's only 3,400 words too long. One scene. 1,100 words. 1,100 hard won words. Gone.

So I keep asking, is there anything so sweet as the first cut?

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Robert Nowall
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I hear the first cut is the deepest. Or was that somebody's song?
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History
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I love to edit; but I hate to cut.
Another thing I am painfully learning.

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extrinsic
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A death of a thousand cuts is sweetest when the cuts enliven a narrative. I assume "cut" means more than excise, strike out, remove, but rather cutting to refine, polish, strengthen and clarify. Then there's also cut as in cinema transitions, which also have written word parallels: jump cuts, matching cuts, and bookend cuts.
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babooher
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Cutting away the fluff. Cutting the indulgences.
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wetwilly
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The most unkindest cut of all.

I just had to hack an entire ending off my story that I am otherwise quite happy with. It was a shame, because the ending had three or four fun, clever lines in it, but it wasn't working in a big picture sense.

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Merlion-Emrys
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From a certain point of view, all writing is an "indulgence."

Yeah, kill your darlings and all that, I know.

But sort of like how a germaphobe can sterilize themselves into sickness, you don't want to kill ALL the darlings and leave not but a blasted wasteland...

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babooher
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It is freeing to me. I have a handle on how I want to edit. I think this will be good.
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